Preterm Births Are Soaring – Globally

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From way back when I was in graduate school until today I have advocated for good prenatal maternal health as it does help reduce premature births!


Being born prematurely is, in itself, the cause of many developmental problems through life.

But some politicians and other policy makers have always said:  Nope – no care for pregnant women – not on our dime!!  Which is an odd stance since prenatal care is less expensive than a newborn's intensive care. 

I will keep advocating for better health and better nutrition for everyone for the rest of my life – because I care about human development! 

And because these many many years later – we still have statistics like this:

The world's developed countries have seen their average rate of premature births double to 6 percent since 1995, despite efforts to reduce the phenomenon…

And the United States? Were we think we have superior health care? We rank 130th out of the 184 countries in the study!

What starts labor is still an unknown. What we do know is that keeping a fetus inside for the duration or a normal pregnancy – about 40 weeks is the best for the baby. 

As this study says:

The ultimate solution — keeping every baby in the womb for 40 weeks – is a challenge. Improving maternal health by treating high blood pressure and infections would help, as would changing obstetrical practices so labor is not induced early for non-medical reasons.

"We still don't know a lot about how to prevent preterm birth," Howson said. "We need vigorous, targeted research into its causes."

 

Thoughts? Comments? Thank you!

 

About the author 

Lynn Dorman, Ph.D.

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