State Representative Mark Romanchuk (R-Ontario) announced that a community health project in Richland County has been approved for funding from the state.

The Infant Mortality Pathways Hub Model Demonstration Expansion/Replication Grant Program has been approved for funding to address the issue of infant mortality in Richland County, which has seen higher than average infant mortality rates in recent years.

“Our infant mortality rate is too high in Richland County,” said Rep. Romanchuk. “I look forward to addressing this problem head-on, utilizing evidenced based best practices.”

Under the grant, the Community Health Access Project (CHAP), located in Mansfield, will receive $180,000 through the Ohio Commission on Minority Health. Grantees are required to implement measures that align with the Healthy People 2020 project, which is working to decrease the number of infant morality deaths country-wide.

Ohio ranks high compared to other states concerning infant mortality rates. According to the Ohio Department of Health, in 2011, 1,088 infants in Ohio died before their first birthday. According to the Richland County Public Health website, in 2011, infant mortality rates in Richland County were 10.16 deaths for every 1,000 live births.

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