Premature births at highest point since 2007: March of Dimes

Premature births in the United States in 2021 reached their highest point since 2007, according to the March of Dimes Report Card on maternal and infant health.

In 2021, 10.5 percent of babies born in the U.S. were premature, or born before 37 weeks of gestational age, a 4 percent increase from 2020. Just four states saw a decrease in premature births.

Babies born early are more likely to face health issues than babies born around 40 weeks, and complications can persist into adulthood, according to March of Dimes.

“The report card indicates the maternal and infant health crisis is worsening for all families,” the group concluded, calling the rise in premature births “troubling.”

The U.S. overall received a D+ on the report card, a notch lower than its C- rating in 2020. 

Vermont was the only state to score a top grade, earning an A- with the country’s lowest premature birth rate of 8 percent. 

Oregon, Washington, California and Idaho all scored B grades with premature birth rates at or near 9 percent, as did New Hampshire, Massachusetts and New Jersey. 

Nine states, mostly clustered in the southeast, and Puerto Rico earned an F. Mississippi had the highest premature birth rate, at 15 percent, followed by Louisiana at 13.5 percent and Alabama at 13.1 percent. 

The report also highlighted racial disparities in premature birth rates.

“Our data reveals that racial differences in birth outcomes persist in the U.S. Infants
born to Black and Native American moms are 62 percent more likely to be born preterm
than those born to White women,” the report reads.

March of Dimes called on Congress to take a number of steps to shore up health care for women and babies, like permanently extending Medicaid postpartum coverage to 12 months after birth and passing legislation to expand access to midwifery care.

You May Also Like

Anthony Yarde stopped in eighth round by brilliant Artur Beterbiev | Boxing

Anthony Yarde failed in his against-the-odds bid to become a unified world…

Stefanos Tsitsipas v Novak Djokovic: Australian Open men’s singles final – live | Australian Open 2023

Key events Show key events only Please turn on JavaScript to use…

Bryan Kohberger defense attorney represented Maddie Mogen’s dad on drugs charge

The lawyer representing the only suspect in the brutal slayings of four…

Birmingham goalkeeper Neil Etheridge ‘shaken up’ by alleged racist abuse | Birmingham City

Birmingham goalkeeper Neil Etheridge was allegedly targeted by racist abuse from a…

Boy arrested after girl, 15, stabbed to death in Northumberland | UK news

A teenage boy has been arrested on suspicion of murder after a…

Tyre Nichols’ Brother on Cops Accused in Fatal Beating: ‘I Hope They Die’

The brother of 29-year-old Tyre Nichols spoke out recently about the Memphis…

Palestinians Celebrate Deadly Terror Attack with Candy, Fireworks, ‘Allahu Akbar’

Palestinian cities in the West Bank and Gaza erupted with rejoicing with…

European roundup: Pedri scores winner on 100th Barcelona appearance | European club football

Pedri celebrated his 100th match for Barcelona as he came off the…