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Selected Features                                                        
                                                                                                    
In this section, some of the major maternal and child health indicators for                         
1995 are identified and discussed.  It is hoped that this discussion will                           
orient the reader to the data presented in this report.                                             
                                                                                                    
Natality                                                                        
                                                                                                    
Arkansas resident live births increased from 34,735 in 1994 to 35,154 in 1995,                      
a rise of 1.2 percent.  The Crude Live Birth Rate rose from 14.5 to 14.6 per                        
1,000 persons.                                                                                      
                                                                                                    
All live births have been classified by race of mother into white, black, and                       
other.  Live births increased for whites and decreased  for blacks in 1995.                         
Among white mothers, the number of resident live births increased 1.9 percent,                      
from 26,347 in 1994 to 26,860 in 1995.  The number of live births to black                          
mothers decreased by 2.2 percent, from 7,847 to 7,671.                                              
                                                                                                    
Live births to unmarried mothers increased 1.5 percent from 1994 to 1995.  In                       
1994, there were 11,236 live births to unmarried mothers, representing 32.3                         
percent of all live births, while in 1995 there were 11,403 live births to                          
unmarried mothers, accounting for 32.4 percent of all live births.  The                             
increase was attributable to white mothers, while births to unmarried black                         
mothers decreased.  In 1995, 21.1 percent of all white live births were to                          
unmarried mothers (compared with 20.2 percent in 1994) while among blacks,                          
72.5 percent of live births were to unmarried mothers (compared with 73.9                           
percent in 1994).                                                                                   
                                                                                                    
The number of live births to adolescent mothers (under the age of twenty)                           
decreased from 1994 to 1995.  In 1995, there were 6,902 births to adolescent                        
mothers, a decrease of 1.1 percent from the 6,976 reported in 1994.  As a                           
proportion of all live births, births to adolescent mothers decreased from                          
20.1 percent in 1994 to 19.6 percent in 1995.  Among white mothers, 16.3                            
percent were adolescents (down from 16.8% in 1994), while 31.7 percent of                           
black mothers were adolescents (the same as in 1994).                                               
                                                                                                    
Low birth weight live births remained stable at 8.2 percent, accounting for                         
2,876 of all resident live births in 1995, compared to 2,843 in 1994.  The                          
proportion of white infants with low birth weight  decreased very slightly in                       
1995 to 6.8 percent, versus 6.9 percent in 1994.  The comparable figures among                      
black infants showed a slight increase from 12.8 percent in 1994 to 13.1                            
percent in 1995.                                                                                    
                                                                                                    
The proportion of live births delivered by Cesarean section decreased very                          
slightly from 1994 to 1995. In 1995, there were 9,035 deliveries by Cesarean                        
section, compared to 9,062 in 1994. The 1995 Arkansas Cesarean section rate                         
was 25.7 per 100 deliveries, down from 26.1 in 1994.  The majority of Cesarean                      
section deliveries are primary.  In 1995, 61.3 percent of all Cesareans were                        
primary sections.                                                                                   
                                                                                                    
Mortality                                                                       
                                                                                                    
The infant mortality rate decreased from 9.4 deaths per 1,000 live births in                        
1994 to 9.0 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1995.  There were 325 infant                            
deaths in 1994, compared with 317 in 1995.  The neonatal mortality rate                             
increased from 5.0 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1994 to 5.5 deaths per                           
1,000 live births in 1995.  The postneonatal mortality rate, however,                               
decreased from 4.3 deaths per 1,000 live births in 1994 to 3.5 deaths per                           
1,000 live births in 1995.  The Arkansas infant mortality rate remained higher                      
than the national average in 1995 with a rate of 9.0 deaths per 1,000 live                          
births compared to a national rate of 7.5.  In 1995, the Arkansas  average was                      
higher than the national average in both neonatal (5.5 versus 4.8) and                              
postneonatal (3.5 versus 2.7) mortality.                                                            
                                                                                                    
The infant mortality rate among blacks increased between 1994 and 1995, from                        
13.2 to 14.5 deaths per 1,000 live births.  The increase was due to a rise in                       
neonatal mortality, which increased from 6.9 in 1994 to 8.5 in 1995.                                
Postneonatal mortality among blacks dropped slightly in 1995 from 6.4 to 6.0.                       
Infant mortality rates remained higher for blacks than whites in 1995 at 14.5                       
versus 7.5 deaths per 1,000 live births, respectively.  The infant mortality                        
rate among whites decreased in 1995, dropping from 8.2 to 7.5.  The decline                         
was attributable to a decrease in postneonatal mortality from 3.8 in 1994 to                        
2.9 in 1995.  The neonatal mortality among whites increased very slightly in                        
1995, from 4.5 to 4.6.                                                                              
 
 
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