Date of Award


Document Type


Degree Name

Master of Science

First Advisor

Betty LeMasters

Second Advisor

Joseph Silverio

Third Advisor

Lauren Clark-Rice


This thesis will focus on the causes of infant mortality in the United States. The lack of adequate prenatal care will be specifically addressed.

Research has attributed the majority of preventable infant deaths to socio-economic factors as opposed to the lack of technology. Since the percentage of the United States GNP spent on medical care continues to rise without subsequent decreases in infant deaths, it becomes necessary to focus on causal relationship.

Since a nation's infant mortality rate has long been viewed as an indicator of the country's effectiveness in meeting health needs, many areas must be targeted. The importance of personal accountability coupled with governmental responsibility form portions of the medical, social, and moral dilemma of the problem.

The purpose of the present study is to investigate the primary causes of infant mortality including those ranging from substance abuse to the inability of obtaining adequate prenatal care. Specifically, it is hypothesized that the use of converted recreational vehicles to provide prenatal care and other related services in locales with high infant mortality rates will improve those rates.

Preliminary studies of other projects to improve prenatal care and initial surveys of St. Louis area hospitals indicate that this hypothesis be accepted. Both the projects and the initial random sampling of three major hospitals, all target prenatal care as a foundation for solving a formidable problem.