The annual Child Fatality Review State Team report, published by the Arizona Department of Health Services, claims the major causes of preventable deaths for 2013 were firearms, car crashes and poisonings.
Officials said although the total number of child deaths in the state decreased from 854 in 2012 to 811 in 2013, fatalities involving child abuse and neglect increased.
Overall, death rates among children increased by approximately 87 percent over the past six years in the state due to maltreatment. The Arizona Child Fatality Review Team said the rate was about 5.6 deaths per 1,000 children last year, or 92 kids, a 30 percent jump from 2012. Just under a quarter of the 92 cases of maltreatment are still being investigated by CPS. The agency closed 24 of those cases and 43 others have not been investigated by an Arizona, tribal or out-of-state agency.
The most common factor of 74 unexpected infant deaths was suffocation. An estimated 89 percent of those deaths could have been prevented in a safer crib, or by not sleeping in the same bed as adults or other children.
Though car crash fatalities reduced by about 26 percent since 2008, the Child Fatality Review team determined all of the 80 child deaths in 2013 due to car crashes were preventable because of a lack of seatbelt.
Officials reported of the 29 child deaths due to firearms last year, 97 percent could have been prevented by addressing factors, such as access to guns, supervision and substance abuse.
The death toll from suicide dropped from 33 in 2012 to 25 in 2013, according to the report. Officials said 28 percent were known victims of bullying.
See the full report here: http://bit.ly/1uu8jEy.