Every year, more than half a million babies are born too soon in the United States. Our country's premature birth rate has risen by 36 percent over the last 25 years. that's serious cause for concern.
Premature birth costs society more than $26 billion a year and takes a high toll on families. When a baby is born prematurely, before 37 completed weeks gestation, there can be many problems. premature birth is the leading cause of newborn death and many disabilities. it can happen to any baby without warning and for no know reason. Until we have more answers, no one knows whose baby will be next. Despite advances that give the tiniest babies a chance of survival, premature birth often remains a life-threatening condition. the rate is even higher among African-Americans for whom one baby in every six is affected. Unfortunately most people are not aware that premature birth is a problem, or how widespread it is.
You can do something about the national health crisis of premature birth. During November and all year, marchofdimes.com offers many ways for you to take action, from wearing pink and blue, to sending letters and raising funds.
Here are some suggestions of what we all can do--
Women who are pregnant or may become pregnant:
- Get early and regular prenatal care
- Talk to her health care provider about how to reduce her risk for preterm labor
- Learn the signs and symptoms of preterm labor and what to do if it happens
Health Care providers can:
- Be diligent in counseling pregnant patients on reducing their risks for preterm labor and teaching them the signs and symptoms of preterm labor and what to do.
- Recognize that premature birth is a common serious and costly problem of all of us.
- Understand that preterm labor can happen to any woman; the causes of nearly half of premature births are not known.
- Understand that until we have more answers, no one knows whose baby will be next.
Zeta Phi Beta Sorority has been a proud national program partner with the March of Dimes for the past 40 years though our national Stork's Nest program. please support the March of Dimes on World Prematurity Day on Saturday, November 17, 2012 by participating in local events in the area and by goind to Facebook.com/WorldPrematurityDay on November 17th to help raise awareness.