The premature or preterm birth rate in the United States has fallen for the seventh consecutive year to its lowest level in 17 years, according to the annual Premature Birth Report Card released by the March of Dimes.
The annual report showed that the preterm birth rate in the country dropped to 11.4 percent in 2013.
231,000 fewer babies have been born prematurely because of the state-run sustained interventions since the year 2006.
According to the experts at the March of Dimes, the policies have extended in saving USD 11.9 billion in healthcare and other related expenses.
The March of Dimes, a nonprofit for pregnancy and baby health, estimated that medical costs for an average preterm infant are about USD 54,000 in comparison to only USD 4,000 for a healthy newborn.
The United States met the Healthy People 2020 goal of March of Dimes seven years early, but the organisation still received Grade ‘C’ as the country failed to meet its 9.6 percent target.
“Achieving the Healthy People 2020 goal is reason for celebration, but the US still has one of the highest rates of preterm birth of any high-resource country and we must change that,” Dr. Jennifer L. Howse, president of March of Dimes, said in a press release.
Howse further said, “We are probing into a network of five prematurity research centers to find solutions to this still too-common, costly, and serious problem.”
Over 450,000 babies were born preterm in 2013 as comparison to 542,893 in 2006, when the rate was recorded at its highest.
The preterm or premature birth is a leading cause of concern over the newborn deaths in the US.
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