Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month


When a children lose their parents they are called orphans and when someone loses their spouse they are a widow/widower, but there is no word for when parents lose a child or multiple children. We shouldn’t need a word, it’s such a terrible thing, but it does happens. In 1988, Ronald Reagan declared October National Pregnancy & Infant Loss Awareness Month as a way to help those who have lost a child during pregnancy or the first few years of life and raise awareness of pregnancy risks.

Sudden Unexpected Infant Death (SUID)

According to CDC data published in 2014, the SUID death rate declined considerably after the American Academy of Pediatrics safe sleep recommendations were released in 1992 and the initiation of the Back to Sleep campaign in 1994. Broken down, the causes of infant deaths are:

  • 44% – About 1,500 died of SIDs
  • 24% – Accidental suffocation/strangulation in bed
  • 31% – Unknown

Unfortunately, the unknown deaths rates have remained constant from 1990-2014. There is always a possibility of death, to keep the chances as low as possible follow the guidelines provided by your doctor or, if you are uninsured, make sure you can find a clinic for care.

Risk Factors For Pregnancy Complications

There is a risk for both the mother and infant if any of the following are present:

  • Aged 35+
  • Pre-existing health conditions
  • Drug/alcohol abuse
  • Smoking
  • History of miscarriages
  • Violence/physical abuse
  • Little to no access to health care

Free Health Care Options in KC Area

Infant and maternal death rates are higher in areas that are under-insured or uninsured. If an expectant mother does not have access to proper health care for she and her baby, the likelihood of death is higher. A few clinics in the Kansas City metro area are great options for those who are in need of free care.

  • KC Care Clinic has two locations, click here for more information.
  • Liberty Women’s Clinic is located in Liberty, MO but if you can’t make the drive they have a mobile clinic as well. Click here for a look at all their services.
  • Planned Parenthood has many services and plenty of locations. To learn more about care options, click here.

Grief Support & Resources

For parents who have lost a child, there are plenty of support groups and information out there, below are a few websites to help.


Test Smartly Labs of Kansas City provides wellness testing for individuals, including screening for most major health risks. There are no doctor’s orders, appointments, or insurance needed to visit our facility for accurate lab testing.

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