Week of November 18, 2019

New Reports Released by NCHS on Vision Testing Among Children Aged 3-5 and Provisional Data on Births/Infant Mortality

NCHS has released a study on vision testing among pre-school aged children in the United States, using data from the 2016-2017 National Health Interview Survey. The study shows that nearly 2 out of 3 children ages 3 to 5 in the U.S. have had their vision tested. Hispanic and non-Hispanic black children were more likely to have had their vision tested than non-Hispanic white children, and children with private health insurance were more likely than those with public insurance or those with no insurance to have had their vision tested.

This week NCHS also released its quarterly data on birth and infant mortality rates in the country. The provisional release on births covered the 12 month period ending in mid-year 2019. Declines were seen in overall fertility, as well as for teen birth rates and all birth rates to women under age 35. Declines were also documented for cesarean delivery rates. Increases were observed for birth rates to women ages 35 to 44, and for preterm birth rates.

The provisional release on infant mortality covered the full year of 2018, and showed that the total infant mortality rate in the U.S. was 5.69 infant deaths per 1,000 live births, which is statistically unchanged from 2017. A decrease was documented for accidental death rates among infants, while no change was observed for other leading causes of infant death, including SIDS, birth defects, preterm/low birthweight, and maternal complications during pregnancy and delivery.