United States' premature birth rate continues to decline

United states' premature birth rate continues to decline
The rate of premature births has declined to 11.7 percent, the lowest rate in a decade, according to the March of Dimes 2012 Premature Birth Report Card.

(HealthDay)—The rate of premature births has declined to 11.7 percent, the lowest rate in a decade, according to the March of Dimes 2012 Premature Birth Report Card.

The March of Dimes Report Card compares each state's rate with the goal set by the March of Dimes of lowering the rate to 9.6 percent of all by 2020. The report tracks states' progress towards lowering their preterm birth rates and assesses contributory factors.

According to the report, the U.S. preterm dropped for the fifth consecutive year in 2011, to 11.7 percent, with declines seen in every racial and ethnic group. The largest declines in occurred among babies born at 34 to 36 weeks of pregnancy. Vermont, Oregon, New Hampshire, and Maine met the 9.6 percent preterm birth rate goal and consequently earned an "A" on their Report Cards. As a whole, the United States earned a "C" on the Report Card, and 45 states, the District of Columbia, and Puerto Rico saw improvements in their preterm birth rates in 2012. The improved rates are likely due to an increase in successful programs and interventions. The March of Dimes estimates potential savings of about $3 billion in health care and costs to society from the reduction in premature births.

"These results demonstrate that many premature births can be prevented with the right policies and bold leadership," Jennifer L. Howse, Ph.D., president of the March of Dimes, said in a statement. "Our national progress in reducing premature births over the past five years shows that when becomes a priority, babies benefit."

More information: More Information

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

US preterm birth rate shows 5-year improvement

Nov 13, 2012

The U.S. preterm birth rate dropped for the fifth consecutive year in 2011 to 11.7 percent, the lowest in a decade, giving thousands more babies a healthy start in life and saving billions in health and social costs.

Preterm births rise 36 percent since early 1980s

Jan 07, 2009

New government statistics confirm that the decades-long rise in the United States preterm birth rate continues, putting more infants than ever at increased risk of death and disability.

US gets a 'D' for preterm birth rate

Nov 17, 2009

For the second consecutive year, the United States earned only a "D" on the March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Card, demonstrating that more than half a million of our nation's newborns didn't get the ...

Recommended for you

Ob-gyn guidance issued for young cancer patient concerns

Jul 25, 2014

(HealthDay)—Young cancer patients and survivors may have gynecologic concerns, which should be managed before, during, and after treatment, according to a Committee Opinion published in the August issue ...

Common blood thinner for pregnant women proven ineffective

Jul 24, 2014

It's a daily injection to the belly for pregnant women at risk of developing blood clots and it's ineffective, according to a clinical trial led by researchers at The Ottawa Hospital and published today by the prestigious ...

Improving life before it begins

Jul 22, 2014

A group of Mexican specialists in fetal medicine have successfully performed over 200 surgeries on unborn babies, inside the womb of the mother. Doctors, grouped under the signature Fetal Medicine Mexico, ...

User comments