New bills aimed at saving babies' lives - WECT TV6-WECT.com:News, weather & sports Wilmington, NC

New bills aimed at saving babies' lives

The number of baby deaths in Brunswick County doubled between 2010 and 2011. The number of baby deaths in Brunswick County doubled between 2010 and 2011.

BRUNSWICK COUNTY, NC (WECT) – September is National Infant Mortality Awareness Month, and Sen. Kay Hagan is introducing two new bills to help save lives, which is important because we recently discovered the number of baby deaths in Brunswick County doubled between 2010 and 2011.

The first is the Sudden Unexpected Infant Death Bill, which provides more information and training exercises to childcare professionals and parents. The second is the Newborn Screening Act, which will test babies for various diseases after they are born.

We checked to see where local counties stand when it comes to baby deaths in the area.

From 2010 to 2011, Columbus County dropped from 12 deaths down to six. New Hanover County lowered its total from 11 down to nine. However, in Brunswick County, the number actually doubled from four to eight.

The county's health director, Fred Michael says they have a task force in place to work in the community – hoping to lower that number.

"We will continue to try to identify women who are at risk and there are lots of different factors to that," said Michael. "We want to make sure people in her neighborhood are hooked up with them to know what their needs are and what kind of service they provide will really help these women."

On Thursday, Hagan is holding a public hearing on the Newborn Screening Bill. For more information, click here.

To see a county breakdown of the infant mortality rates in North Carolina, click here.

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