Focus Area: Infant Mortality

Day 366: Infant Mortality Initiative

In 2016, Junior League of St. Louis launched Day 366, our initiative aimed at dramatically reducing the number of St. Louis-area babies dying in their first 365 days of life from 11.8 deaths per 1,000 babies.

Infant mortality is a complex issue that impacts everyone in St. Louis, from doctors and teachers to families and politicians. It is linked to the overall health of our society; when babies aren’t healthy, neither is the community.

Every week in St. Louis City and St. Louis County, 46 babies are born too early, 32 babies are born too small and five babies die before their first birthdays.

JLSL members are making a difference through Day 366, contributing their time to volunteer work, community partnerships, and advocacy. For more information, please contact Junior League of St. Louis at 314-822-2344.


Infant Mortality in St. Louis

The infant mortality rate represents the number of babies who die prior to their first birthday, regardless of cause. In the United States, the rate is 6.1 per 1,000 babies, high enough to place the U.S. 27th among developed countries, but the news from St. Louis City is worse: 11.8 deaths per 1,000 babies. That death rate results from things like premature births, SIDS and birth defects, but can also be made worse by a mother’s experience of chronic stress.

For babies – and their mothers – reaching the 366th day of life as stress-free as possible is vital to changing infant mortality rates in St. Louis.