Denmark: Higher risk for infant mortality among Pakistanis, Somalis, Turks

Denmark: Higher risk for infant mortality among Pakistanis, Somalis, Turks

Pakistani, Somali and Turkish immigrant women in Denmark have a higher risk for stillborn children than Danish women, according to a new study by the University of Southern Denmark.

In fact, they incidence of stillborns is almost double as by Danish women, and the same goes for infant mortality - the risk that a baby will die in its first year.

Epidemiology professor at the University of Southern Denmark Anne Marie Nybo Andersen headed the study and she says that one of the explanation for the problem might be marriage within the family.

Anne Marie Nybo Andersen told Newspaq that it's uncertain whether immigrant women get the same prenatal diagnostics of inborn deformities as Danish-born women.  Moreover, there's a tradition in these immigrant groups to marry within the family and it's been known for many years that there's an increased risk for infant mortality among such couples.

In Denmark, 40% of Pakistani couples are relatives.

On the other hand, there are no differences in the statistics between women from Denmark, Lebanon and the former Yugoslavia.

For this reason the experts in this study don't think the higher death rate among infants is caused by poorer social circumstances, since the Lebanese immigrants are on one of the lowest rungs of the social ladder.

With this new information in hand, Anne Marie Nybo Andersen says that people should be better informed of the disadvantages of having children with a family member.

She says they should ensure that there will be proper information about the risk of marriage within the family and they they should also study if the health care agencies give the same good service to everybody.

Source: Avisen (Danish)

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