OPEN LETTER TO FIRST LADY MICHELLE OBAMA ON THE HIGH RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN IMPAIRED BREASTFEEDING BONDING AND INFANT MORTALITY NOT ACKNOWLEDGED BY THE SURGEON GENERALʼS CALL TO ACTON TO SUPPORT BREASTFEEDING 2011; CALLS FOR WEANING AGE OF EVERY INFANT/ CHILD BE RECORDED AND PUBLISHED AS PART OF THE IMMUNOLOGICAL RECORD BY THE NATIONAL CENTER FOR HEALTH STATISTICS, CENTER FOR DISEASE CONTROL AND PREVENTION; AND ESTABLISH BY LAW THE GENDER EQUALITY OF REPRESENTATION IN THE CONGRESS.

James W. Prescott, Ph.D.

The excess health risks associated with not breastfeeding are well known and acknowledged by The  Surgeon  Generalʼs  Call  to  Acton  to  Support  Breastfeeding  2011  but  the  psychosocial effects are little mentioned except to note the enhanced feeling of bonding by breastfeeding with no mention of its powerful relationship to infant mortality (p.3). Child Obesity, not mentioned, is a lesser health risk than infant/child mortality. http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/topics/breastfeeding/calltoactiontosupportbreastfeeding.pdf http://www.violence.de/prescott/letters/IM_BF_Homicide_Stats_Update_2010.html

The 2010  AAP Policy Statement: Child Fatality Review. Pediatrics 2010; 126; 592-596

http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/reprint/126/3/592.pdf states:

The preventable death of a child is an unparalleled tragedy for a family. Similarly, a nationʼs ability to reduce child mortality rates is a  measure  of  that  societyʼs  overall  well  being,  and  failure  to address   preventable   causes   of  child   mortality   is  a  national tragedy. Each year in the United States, more than 17 000 infants and children die from injury, which remains the leading cause of child mortality in the United States.1 Add to this the number of preventable noninjury deaths, including many deaths related to prematurity, and it becomes clear that a majority of American child deaths are preventable. —Introduction

This author has initiated a dialogue on this AAP Policy Statement that can be found In Pediatrics

Online.  http://pediatrics.aappublications.org/cgi/eletters/126/3/592

Breastfeeding Mothers are rarely violent toward their nursing infants and children which points to a solution for preventing the high infant mortality rate and its relationship to homicide. http://www.violence.de/prescott/letters/IM_BF_Homicide_Stats.pdf

This writer wrote DHHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius on 27 January 2011, which outlined these facts with additional supporting evidence but have received no acknowledgement  of this and other communications.

http://www.violence.de/prescott/letters/Lt_Sebelius_DHHS_1.27.11.pdf

Additional Commentary and Letter of 22 February 2011 to First Lady Obama HERE.

Overpeck, et al (1998), NICHD investigators, reported "Homicide is the leading cause of infant deaths due to injury accounting for almost one third of such deaths in 1996…. More than 80 percent of documented homicides in very young children can be viewed as fatal child abuse, and  there  is  strong  evidence  that  both  homicides   and  fatal  cases  of  child  abuse  are underaccounted" (p.1211).

The problem of underestimating child abuse homicides in our society is reflected in a retrospective descriptive study of child abuse homicides in North Carolina from 1985-1994 by Herman-Giddens, et.al (1999). They found that the ICD-9 cause of death coding underascertained child abuse homicides by 61.6%. These studies have yet to be conducted for the other 49 states by the NICHD that would give a true national profile of the magnitude of child abuse homicides.

Brenner,  R.A.,  Overpeck,  M.D.,  Trumble,  A.C.,  DerSimonian.  R.,  and  Berendes,  H.  (1999).

Deaths Attributable to Injuries in Infants, United States, 1983-1991 PEDIATRICS   Vol.

103 No. 5 May, pp. 968-974

Herman-Giddens,  M.D, Brown. G ., Vberbiest, S., Carlson, P.J. Hooten, E.G., Howell, E., and Butss, J.D.,, (1999). Underascertainment  of Child Abuse Mortality in the United Sates. JAMA  282(5): 463-467.

Overpeck,  M.D.  Brenner,  R.A.,  Trumble,  A.C.,  Trifiletti,  L.B.,  Berendes,  H.W.  (1998).  Risk Factors  for  Infant  Homicide  in  the  United  States.  The  New  England  Journal  of Medicine V339  (17

The NIH publication of the Report of the Panel on NIH Research on Antisocial, Aggressive, and Violence-Related Behaviors and their Consequences (April 1994) stated: "Violence constitutes the second leading cause of death for youth in America, and it poses a health risk for persons of all ages"; and "To  date,  investment  across  all  Institutes  and  ICDs in  violence-related  research has been  minuscule relative to the total NIH budget (i.e.0.5%)."  View  Page 138. http://www.violence.de/history/NIHR_1994.html

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) informed this writer on 17 February 2011 that the “NCHS does not produce rankings for infant mortality by States”, which denies to State officials and researches the information needed to evaluate the worst States to take corrective actions. The publication of State Rankings on infant mortality must be a priority for the NCHS. See attachment.

It is inexcusable and unconscionable that this nation has such a disgraceful record of infant and child  mortality,  which  contains  a significant  component  of homicidal  behaviors  that  includes violence against women. The intentional disregard by public health officials of these data calls for immediate corrective actions.

Madame Obama, you are urged to take the corrective actions that are necessary, which public health officials refuse to take.

BIOBEHAVIORAL SYSTEMS

1140-23 Savannah Road

Lewes, DE 19958

302.645.7436
jprescott34@comcast.net
http://www.violence.de
http://www.montagunocircpetition.org http://ttfuture.org/bonding/dvd_archive/overview http://ttfuture.org/blog/1181

22 February 2011

First Lady Michelle Obama

The White House

1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW Washington, DC 20500-0004

Dear First Lady Obama,

You are to be commended for your support of breastfeeding in your efforts to help control obesity in children. There are, however, greater issues in the breastfeeding of children not addressed by Anne E. Kornblut in her article “Views on breast-feeding become political”, The Washington Post, 2.20.11; and in The Surgeon Generalʼs Call to Acton to Support Breastfeeding 2011, U.S. Public Health Service, DHHS recently released by Surgeon General Regina M. Benjamin, M.D., M.B.A., USPHS. http://www.surgeongeneral.gov/topics/breastfeeding/calltoactiontosupportbreastfeeding.pdf

Both of these reports neglect to mention the long-term psychosocial effects of insufficient breastfeeding on infant survival, which are staggering. In my letters to DHHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius and DHHS Surgeon General Benjamin, I stated from reports on distribution of breastfeeding  duration  and  infant  mortality  for 2004  by the Center  for Disease  Control,  the following:

90% (9/10) States  With Less Than  15% of Children  Breastfeeding  At 12 Months  Have

Highest Infant Mortality Rates

83% (10/12) States With Greater Than 25% of Children Breastfeeding At 12 Months Have Lowest Infant Mortality Rates http://www.violence.de/prescott/letters/IM_BF_Homicide_Stats_Update_2010.html

These letters are enclosed requesting remedial actions on the neglect of the DHHS to cite the overwhelming  evidence  of breastfeeding  for the survival of infants and their emotional-social well being with supporting documentation and correspondence with NIH officials over the past five years.

Infant mortality could be virtually eliminated if all infants were breastfed, wherever possible, throughout the first year of life.

In 2005, the United States ranked 30th  in infant mortality among 31 advanced nations of the world (CDC); and 46th among the 224 nations of the world (CIA World Factbook, 2010, est.). http://www.cdc.gov/nchs/data/databriefs/db23.htm

https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2091rank.html https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/

No State records the number and percentage of infants who die during the first year of life who are being actively breastfed at the time of their death. It is requested that you request from Secretary Sebelius to act to provide from each State the number and percentage  of children who die during their first year who were being actively breastfed at the time of their death; and  that  the  Weaning  Age  of  each  child  be  made  part  of  the  immunological  record  and published along with the infant and child mortality rates for each Sate by the National Center For Health Statistics.

These data would provide an invaluable resource for determining the actual benefits of duration of breastfeeding with accuracy not currently available to researchers.

Your defense of breastfeeding mothers is sorely needed.

The gender equality of women in the legislative bodies of this nation is a necessary condition to bring full equality of women with men. You are urged to make this a reality. http://www.violence.de/prescott/letters/Gender.pdf

It is recognized  that violence  against  women  and her children  is the greatest  crime against Humanity and I am including a copy of my DVD The Origins of Love & Violence: Sensory Deprivation and the Developing Brain which describes decades of research supported by the NICHD that illuminates the origins of human violence and what we must do to transform our Culture of Violence to a Culture of Peace.

Sincerely,

James W. Prescott, Ph.D. Director

Enclosures

Cc

Michael Mendizza Founder and Director Touch the Future http://ttfuture.org/welcome

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Subject: RE: Infant  Mortality Ranks by State

Date: Thu, 17 Feb 2011 15:39:54 -0500

Thread-Topic: Infant  Mortality Ranks by State

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From: "NCHSED (CDC)" <nchsed@cdc.gov>

Sender: "Ramirez, Sharon L. (CDC/OSELS/NCHS)" <slr1@cdc.gov> To: CDC-INFO <CDC-INFO@cdc.gov>, <jprescott34@comcast.net>

NCHS does not produce rankings for infant mortality by States.

-----Original Message----- From: CDC-INFO

Sent: Thursday, February 17, 2011 3:36 PM To: jprescott34@comcast.net

Subject: RE: Infant Mortality Ranks by State

Thank you for your inquiry to CDC-INFO.

Your request has been forwarded to the appropriate CDC program for their assistance.

Thank you for contacting CDC-INFO.  Please do not hesitate to call

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-----Original Message-----

From:  jprescott34@comcast.net Sent:  2/15/2011 10:54:21 AM To:  <cdcinfo@cdc.gov>

Subject:  Infant  Mortality Ranks by State

15 Feb 11

Could you provide me with the Ranks of Infant Mortality by State per

Table 32, p 114 Deaths: Final Data for 2006  of the NCVS  Report.