The decline in mortality among black babies has stopped

BLACK babies born in America are more than twice as likely as white ones to die before their first birthdays. A large racial gap has been present for as long as statistics have been kept. Nonetheless, infant mortality has generally declined at a faster rate for blacks than whites, leading to hope that the disparity might eventually disappear.

That encouraging trend seems to have levelled off. According to a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, black infant mortality in America stopped falling in around 2012. The paper found that if black babies had died at the same rate as white ones, in 2015 nearly 4,000 infant deaths would have been averted.

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