SCOTLAND

Infant deaths

Graphs on this page:

Supporting information:

Key points

  • Children born to parents with manual backgrounds are around twice as likely to die in their first year of life as those born to parents from non-manual backgrounds.  This has been the case throughout the last decade.
  • The authorities with the highest rate of infant deaths are Shetlands and Inverclyde (noting that the numbers in Shetlands are very small, with consequent uncertainties about the precise rate).
  • The rate of infant deaths in Scotland is somewhat lower than that in most of the other regions of the United Kingdom.

Definitions and data sources

The first graph shows the annual number of infant deaths per 1,000 live births, with the data shown separately according to the social class of the father.  Infant deaths are deaths which occur at ages under one year.  Up to the year 2000, the social classes used are the traditional ones, ranging from I to V.  From 2001, Scotland has adopted the new ONS social class classifications.  The data source is the General Registrar Office and the data is based on a 100% sample of live births (the data is not publicly available).  Cases where the social class of the father is unknown have been excluded from the analysis.

The second graph shows how the rate number of infant deaths per thousand live births varies by local authority.  The data source is theGeneral Registrar Office.  To improve its statistical reliability, the data in the second graph is the average for the latest ten years.

The third graph shows how the number of infant deaths per thousand live births in Scotland compares with the rest of the United Kingdom.  The data sources are ONS vital statistics (for England and Wales), General Registrar Office (for Scotland) and NISRA vital statistics (for Northern Ireland).  To improve its statistical reliability, the data is the average for the latest three years.

Overall adequacy of the indicator: medium.  The number of live births that are not coded is relatively few but the change in social class definition makes the time trends harder to interpret.