Report reveals city has second-highest rate of infant mortality in the country (From Bradford Telegraph and Argus)
Get involved: send your pictures, video, news and views by texting TANEWS to 80360, or email
Report reveals city has second-highest rate of infant mortality in the country
Bradford has the second-highest rate of infant mortality in England, according to a health report.
In the most deprived areas of the district, the number of children dying before their first birthday is as high as one in every hundred.
The report, drawn up by director of public health Dr Anita Parkin, said there were 9.9 deaths per 1,000 live births in the most deprived areas, compared to 7.9 deaths per 1,000 across the Bradford district as a whole.
She said: “Infant mortality rates are significantly higher for the Pakistani population than other populations within Bradford district.”
She recommended raising people’s awareness of how genetic disorders are inherited, as well as reducing the number of women who smoke or abuse drugs or alcohol while pregnant.
Dr Parkin’s report also highlighted the problem of child poverty.
She said: “As of 2010, more than one in four children (36,080) in the district live in child poverty, compared to one in five nationally. This rises to one in two in some small areas.”
Among her recommendations were to “encourage positive parenting to improve resilience and help parents protect children from the effects of poverty”.
Her report was being drawn up to help identify the key health priorities for the district ahead of an NHS overhaul.
NHS Bradford and Airedale will be disbanded next month, along with the rest of the country’s primary care trusts, as part of a Government reform. Responsibility for public health will then be transferred to the local authority.
Councillor David Green, Council leader and chairman of the Bradford and Airedale Health and Wellbeing Board, said although life expectancy continued to rise, the Bradford district faced “considerable challenges”.
He said: “There are long-standing issues related to obesity, diabetes, heart disease and infant mortality and different parts of the district continue to have big differences in health; men in the most affluent areas can expect to live 12 years longer than those in the most deprived places and women for eight years.”
He said improving health was a top priority.