Posted November 29, 2019 in Articles
CLEVELAND, Ohio – A group dedicated to reducing infant deaths in Cleveland and Cuyahoga County will receive $4.8 million over the next two years from the Ohio Department of Medicaid and the state’s managed care plans.
The money will go to First Year Cleveland, a public-private partnership formed in December 2015 to reduce Cuyahoga County’s infant mortality rate, which is one of the highest in the nation.
The same state agencies also have awarded $2.48 million to Summit County Public Health to support programs to reduce infant mortality rates in the Akron area, particularly among African-American families.
A news release from First Year Cleveland states that the money for Cuyahoga County will be used to try to address the disparity in death rates between children born to African-American women and those born to white mothers.
“The Ohio Department of Medicaid and its managed care plan partners are committed to funding collaborative local efforts in areas with the greatest racial disparities in infant outcomes; ensuring that African American babies have the same chance to thrive in their first year of life as all other infants,” Medicaid Director Maureen Corcoran is quoted as saying
Bernadette Kerrigan, First Year Cleveland’s executive director, said the money will allow for more African-American expectant parents to receive services designed to increase their chances of having healthy, full-term births.
“First Year Cleveland salutes Governor DeWine, the Ohio Department of Medicaid and Ohio’s Managed Care Plans for their leadership in preventing our babies from dying before their first birthdays,” Kerrigan said in the release.