Pub. date: 2008 | Online Pub. Date: May 28, 2008 | DOI: 10.4135/9781412963930 | Print ISBN: 9781412941655 | Online ISBN: 9781412963930| Publisher:SAGE Publications, Inc.About this encyclopedia
Infant mortality is the death of an infant less than 1 year old. It is commonly described by the infant mortality rate (IMR), which is calculated by dividing the number of newborns dying at under a year of age by the number of live births during the year within a population. Analysts can use such data to compare the health and well-being of people across and within countries. The health status of infants in a society is a gauge of the overall health of the population and is an important predictor of the next generation's health. The significance of infant mortality to public health and epidemiology is that the rate can determine how successful a population is in preventive health measures for pregnant women, the access to and quality of prenatal care, and rate of immunization in a community. Historically, infant mortality was responsible for the deaths of a significant ...