If you are interested in the latest health news you turn to CNN for any newsworthy information you desire, well at least I do especially when it comes to preemie births. This past week a topic I hold close to my heart appeared from CNN Medical Assignment Manager, Ann J. Curley. The piece reported on a 2-year drop in preemie births in the U.S. The findings she reported on were published in the Center for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics and were the results of a study authored by Joyce Martin, an epidemiologist for CDC’s National Center for Health Statistics.
Curley cited statistics including those preterm births decreased from 12.8 percent in 2006 to 12.3 percent in 2008. Preterm preemie births peaked in 2006 in the U.S. The results not only highlighted the first consecutive 2-year drop in U.S. history but also showed a widespread impact that occurred across age, and race, throughout all of the states in the U.S. except for Hawaii.
This significant piece of news is heartwarming because of the fact that preemie babies are at increased risk for serious health issues including cerebral palsy, chronic lung disease, vision, heart and hearing problems as well as mental retardation and learning disabilities.
My own daughter was born 3 months and one week early in 1993 and faces long-term disabilities although thankfully they are mild in nature. We know first-hand how preemie births affect the emotional, mental and physical abilities of the preterm baby right from birth. As my daughter grew her issues became more pronounced especially when she hit the school-age years. Reading the recent news gave me hope that fewer children and their families will have to go through what we have had to endure. Preemie births not only have a medical impact on the children and their families but a financial one as well. Not all families have health coverage. Paperwork for governmental agencies that are set up to help those with medical disabilities can be overwhelming and time-consuming adding to the difficulties faced by families dealing with preemie births. This news is indeed good not only in the medical aspect for the decrease in future rates of disabilities but also in the lower financial cost to families and the community as a whole whom also share the financial burden of preemie births.
CNN Paging Dr. Gupta; U.S. preemie births drop for second year in a row by Ann J. Curley http://pagingdrgupta.blogs.cnn.com/2010/05/11/u-s-preemie-births-drop-for-second-year-in-a-row/