- Associated Press - Tuesday, September 30, 2014

PIERRE, S.D. (AP) - South Dakota’s infant mortality rate dropped last year but there were more deaths attributed to Sudden Infant Death Syndrome.

The state Health Department says there were 80 infant deaths in 2013, for a rate of 6.5 deaths per 1,000 live births. That was down significantly from 104 deaths in 2012 and a rate of 8.6 deaths per 1,000 live births.

Data also show nine SIDS deaths in South Dakota in 2013, up from six in 2012.

First lady Linda Daugaard says the Governor’s Task Force on Infant Mortality will meet Nov. 12 in Sioux Falls to review the data.

The task force recommends strategies such as promoting safe sleep guidelines, increasing early prenatal care and decreasing smoking by pregnant women.

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