Around one-quarter of all babies born in California are born with serious head injuries, according to a report published on Thursday.
The report by the American Academy of Neurology (AAN) found that the state has the highest rate of infant deaths in the US and ranks as the country’s No. 2-ranked state for the infant death rate.
The state ranks at the bottom of the list for the number of babies who die in hospitals each year.
The latest figures show that in 2014, California had an infant mortality rate of 8.3 deaths per 1,000 live births.
The national average is 3.6.
The AAN report said that the US average infant death is 9.2 deaths per 100,000 births, with California in second place with a rate of 6.9 deaths per one million live births, behind only Washington, DC.
“California is one of the most highly industrialized states in the world,” said AAN chair Dr Robert Siegel, a professor of neurology at the University of California, San Francisco.
“But there are more than two million people who live in California and that is a lot of people with a lot to worry about.”
The US has been at the centre of a major coronavirus outbreak that has seen more than 200,000 cases, more than half of them in California.
The outbreak has caused huge public health and economic damage.
More than 4 million Californians have been infected with the virus, and nearly 2,000 people have died.
Dr Siegel said that while the state was facing “unprecedented” financial pressure, it was in the midst of a recovery.
“The state is going through a period of recovery,” he said.
“We are in a period where people are taking time off work and people are working.
We are still in a very vulnerable position to this disease.”
The report also found that California has the lowest rate of babies with congenital heart defects in the country.
The rate is 6.3 per 100 million live-births, compared to the national average of 10.4.
The study said that in addition to the high infant mortality rates, the state also had one of America’s highest rates of low birth weight.
The US rate of low-birth-weight babies was 6.5 per 100 births, compared with 7.1 in the UK and 8.4 in France.
“A baby with a low birthweight is one that is very, very fragile,” said Dr Sacher.
“That baby is very vulnerable to the disease and to death.”
In recent weeks, the US state of Washington has announced plans to phase out the use of neonatal intensive care units (NICUs), which are often used to deliver infants after birth.
A similar move was made in the California state of New York, which is also in the middle of an outbreak.
The United States also has the world’s highest rate at around 2,400 deaths per 10,000 infants, while the number is the second highest in the OECD.