Reducing Infant Mortality, a free online film, will be released this summer as a tool for drawing attention to infant mortality and health issues as national health care policy is debated on Capitol Hill.
According to the film’s web site, the U.S. health care system is failing babies and families before, during and after birth as evidenced by the country’s worldwide infant mortality ranking of 42nd, with more than double the infant deaths compared to the top 10 countries of the world.
The filmmakers report that they are seizing the opportunity to make a 10-12 minute video to point out the flaws in the way we care for babies and families and to identify the keys to improved care at a time when the U.S. government is working to reform health care.
Of particular concern to the creators of Reducing Infant Mortality is the “astronomically high” African American infant mortality rate of 16 deaths per 1,000, which is similar to countries such as Malaysia and the West Bank. Their hope is for legislators and public policy makers to rethink the current health care system and incorporate the midwifery model of care to save taxpayers millions of dollars each year and promote a new measure of success for the infant’s first year of life—thriving, not just surviving.
The extensive list of experts interviewed for the film includes Michel Odent, Thomas Verny, Marshall Klaus, Phyllis Klaus, Marsdsen Wagner, David Chamberlain, Karen Strange, Robbie Davis-Floyd, Jennie Joseph, Sarah Buckley, Bruce Smith, Yeshi Neumann, Paul Fleiss, Maria Iorillo, Stuart Fischbein, Debra Bonaro-Pascali and Judith Prager.
The Santa Barbara Graduate Institute, a 501 (c) (3) non profit organization, is the fiscal sponsor of the Reducing Infant Mortality film project. Tax deductible donations to support the film can be made by check or electronically via the website. The film’s creators are looking for networking partners to help promote the film and provide a contact e-mail on the site’s home page for those interested in helping.