Cincy hospitals partner to fight infant deaths

CINCINNATI (AP) — Five hospitals and city and county leaders in Cincinnati are joining together to reduce the region’s high rate of infant deaths.

Officials say the rate remains unusually high despite a decade of spending millions of dollars in what officials say were at times disjointed efforts to reduce infant deaths in the greater Cincinnati area.

Cincinnati’s rate of 9.2 deaths per 1,000 births is well above the national rate of 6 deaths per 1,000 births.

The new partnership announced Thursday is led by Hamilton County Commissioner Todd Portune, whose own daughter Emma nearly died 13 years ago after being born premature.

Portune says the group will concentrate first on why the region’s infant-mortality rate is so high and then focus efforts on reducing it significantly within the next five years.

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