The Jacksonville Metropolitan Community Benefit Partnership‘s 2012 Community Health Needs Assessment for the Jacksonville Metropolitan Area report was released this week. The Partnership identified infant mortality as a top priority in the area.
The Partnership is a collaboration between the Health Planning Council of Northeast Florida, Baptist Health, Brooks Rehabilitation, Mayo Clinic, Shands Jacksonville Medical Center, St.Vincent’s HealthCare, Wolfson Children’s Hospital and the health departments of Clay, Duval, Nassau and Putnam counties. The group conducted the region’s first multi-hospital system and public health sector collaborative community health needs assessment.
Under maternal and child health, high infant mortality rates and disparities were identified as issues, as were the high rates of teen births and low birth weight babies.
As a result, Baptist Medical Center Jacksonville (Downtown); Baptist Medical Center South; St. Vincents Medical Center Riverside; St. Vincents Medical Center Southside; UF/Shands Medical Center Jacksonville and Wolfson Children’s Hospital all selected infant mortality as a priority area. Wolfson and St. Vincents Riverside and Southside also chose Florida KidCare, the state children’s health insurance program, as a focus.
The report covered four of the Healthy Start Coalition’s counties, excluding Baker County. The Coalition works to reduce the overall rates of infant mortality and racial disparities and collaborates with numerous community partners, including the aforementioned health agencies, to improve health of moms, babies and families in the region.