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Creek County Clinic offering prenatal care to address infant mortality rates

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Reported by: Brittany Jeffers
Updated: 1/10/2013 11:46 am Published: 1/09/2013 10:33 pm

Dr. James Ross from Warren Clinic says little lives are on the line when prenatal care isn’t available.

“Literally, it can be the difference between life and death for these babies,” said Dr. Ross.

Fetal and Infant Mortality Reviews’ Creek County Community Action Team recognized a lack of prenatal care as a void in the community and acted to meet the need.

Dr. Ross is part of a new partnership that was formed by the Oklahoma State Department of Health and Warren Clinic.

The prenatal care clinic has started in Creek County due to high fetal and infant mortality rates.

“Oklahoma has above average infant mortality rates,” said Dr. Ross. “Approximately 8 to 9 babies out of 1,000 live births won’t make to one year old.”

Recent Data on Infant Mortality Rates (Per 2011 State of the State Report)
                US Rate: 6.8/1000
                State Rate: 8.6/1000
                Creek County Rate: 8.4/1000

Community Specialist for the Tulsa Fetal & Infant Mortality Review Project at Tulsa Health Department, Kassie Prather, told FOX23 the new partnership stemmed from no access to prenatal care providers in Creek County

“It’s created a very underserved population,” said Prather, “Approximately 200 women from Creek County delivered infants last year that had not had any prenatal care.”

Dr. Ross or a nurse practitioner will visit Creek County once a week and offer prenatal care.

“We do blood tests and make sure that everything is going well with mom and baby and we check on how the baby is growing and developing,” said Dr. Ross.

The initial physician visited with take place at St. Francis South Clinic, all following visits will be at Creek County Health Department.

Patients will be assessed for need of Health Department Services such as assistance in Sooner Care Enrollment, WIC, immunizations or Children’s’ First.

For more information on how to make an appointment with Dr. Ross click here

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