US Preterm Birth Rate Declines for 6th Consecutive Year, Says Federal Report

White Plains, New York | Friday, September 6, 2013

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The US preterm birth rate fell for the sixth consecutive year in 2012 to 11.54 percent of all births, the lowest it has been in 15 years and a 10 percent decline since the 2006 peak of 12.8 percent, according to the National Center for Health Statics report issued today.

Dr. Jennifer L. Howse, president of the March of Dimes issued the following statement:

“This is great news and it means thousands more babies were spared the serious health consequences of an early birth,” said March of Dimes President Dr. Jennifer L. Howse.  “This sustained improvement over these past six consecutive years shows that when infant health becomes a priority, babies benefit. We thank our many state and local health department and hospital partners and physicians and nurses for their dedication to the health of moms and babies. With their continued support, and with the right policies and bold leadership, we look forward to  continued health improvements for newborns. We will continue to implement proven interventions and accelerate our investment in new research to prevent preterm birth so one day every baby will get a healthy start in life. ”

About March of Dimes

March of Dimes leads the fight for the health of all moms and babies. We support research, lead programs and provide education and advocacy so that every baby can have the best possible start. Building on a successful 80-year legacy of impact and innovation, we empower every mom and every family.

Visit marchofdimes.org or nacersano.org for more information. Visit shareyourstory.org for comfort and support. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Instagram and Twitter.