Georgia gets ‘F’ for Premature Birth Rate

baby-imgToday Georgia received an “F” for its premature birth rate.

The March of Dimes issued that grade Tuesday in its Premature Birth Report Card, which grades each state’s rate of preterm birth compared to the nation’s objective of a 7.6 percent or less preterm birth rate by 2010. Georgia’s preterm birth rate was 13.6 percent.

The March of Dimes report card assesses states’ progress toward improving access to health care coverage for women of childbearing age, helping women quit smoking during pregnancy, and to preventing medically unnecessary c-sections prior to 39 weeks of pregnancy – three criteria that can reduce preterm birth rates.

One in eight babies are born prematurely in the U.S. and in Georgia 400 babies are born too early each week. Babies who survive a premature birth face the risk of serious life-long health problems including learning disabilities, cerebral palsy, blindness, hearing loss, and other chronic conditions including asthma.

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