Number of Preterm Births Continues to Drop

“For the fifth year in a row, the preterm birth rate in the United States has dropped. The 2011 rate was the lowest in 10 years,” states the March of Dimes.

While this is certainly great news, there’s still a lot to be done. The United States is still at an overall “C” grade. There are still about 500,000 preterm births a year.

What is a preterm birth?

A preterm birth is when a baby is born before reaching 37 weeks in the womb. This can lead to health complications for the child, including trouble breathing, heart defects, or brain bleeding.

There were 64,000 fewer preterm babies born in 2010 than 2006, which was the peak year for preterm births.

This is not only an amazing feat for the infants, but that also lead to a potential savings of $3 billion in healthcare and economic costs.

Our goal as a nation is go bring preterm births number down to 9.6% by 2020.

Thanks to states like Maine, New Hampshire, Oregon and Vermont, who received “A” grades from the March of Dimes, we’re almost there. However, other states, Alabama, Louisiana, and Missisippi, and Puerto Rico, all received failing grades.

Most of the failing grades can be attributed to the mother failing to take care of herself. Many continue to smoke throughout their pregnancies. Others simply skip their necessary checkups because they feel fine, which isn’t a good indicator for the health of the child. Some don’t have access to health insurance, so they miss appointments.

New Mexico has a rate of uninsured women of about 30%. This is not a reason to not take care of yourself while pregnant.

Carlsbad offers out-of-pocket pricing for ultrasounds. Check us our on or visit us today.

To get more information on the other states and the March of Dimes, click here.