The infant mortality rate is a very important indicator of a mother's and child's health and health management in developing countries. For this reason, evaluation of the infant mortality rate and precautions for the reduction of it are particularly important. In our country, there is a substantial improvement in the infant mortality rates; however there still remains a disparity between different provinces and regions.
In this study we aimed to examine the infant mortality rates and its causes in the province of Hatay, where there is a heterogeneous socioeconomically structure.
Materials and Methods: The board established within the Directorate of Health of Hatay reviewed retrospectively the clinical charts and hospital records of babies born between January 2009 and December 2010. As a result, infant mortality and premature birth rates, diarrhea, pneumonia, meningitis, sepsis, congenital anomalies, and contributing maternal and environmental factors were evaluated.
Results: In the province, there were 29,006 live births in 2009 and 28,352 in 2010. Of these, 617 (15.1‰) infant deaths occurred in 2009 and 585 (13.4‰) in 2010. Most of the deaths were related to prematurity (n=185), which was followed by congenital anomalies, especially congenital heart defects, aspiration syndrome, respiratory distress syndrome, sepsis and lower respiratory tract infections.
Conclusion: In the last two years, the infantile mortality rate decreased in Hatay province, and also declined below the infant mortality rate for the nation. Premature births and congenital abnormalities comprise most of the causes of the deaths.