March 26, 2018
Baby heart survival rate raises equity concern
Liggins Institute researchers want to know why the survival rates of babies with a rare but potentially fatal heart defect is lower for Pacific and Maori compared to European babies.
Neonatologist and PhD student Dr Elza Cloete will present the new findings on congenital critical left heart obstruction tomorrow at a major gathering of international mother and baby researchers and health professionals in Auckland, the Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand Annual Scientific Congress.
The condition, in which the left side of babies’ hearts does not form properly, is more common in babies of European ethnicity, but the survival rate to one year was highest in European babies at 58 percent,.
For Maori babies it was 44 percent and 41 percent for Pacific.
She says it is another example of inequity in health outcomes that raises the question of whether methods of healthcare provision contribute to these different outcomes.
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