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Infant mortality rates higher in children with absent fathers

Maureen L Stapleton

Maureen L. Stapleton is executive director of CelebrateOne, the city of Columbus’ initiative to reduce infant mortality.

Simply put, fatherhood matters. Dads can make an extraordinary impact during pregnancy, childbirth and beyond.

In fact, the benefits of paternal involvement begin well before the birth of a child. Men can – and should – offer vital support during pregnancy.

More:The alarming number of Black baby deaths here must be stopped| Opinion

Mothers involved with the fathers of their children are more likely to receive early prenatal care and less likely to deliver prematurely, while newborns raised under these conditions are less likely to succumb to infant mortality – which is defined as death before the first birthday.

According to the National Fatherhood Initiative, infant deaths within the first 28 days of life are four times higher for children with absent fathers.

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