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U.S. earns 'D' for premature births
November 17th, 2010
12:02 AM ET

U.S. earns 'D' for premature births

The United States is getting a "D" grade for its preterm birth rate, even though it is improving in most states, according to the March of Dimes. The organization released its 2010 report card on Wednesday, the eighth annual Prematurity Awareness Day.

The March of Dimes compared the U.S. and each state with the target set in "Healthy People 2010." That report is issued every decade by the Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services

The target rate for preterm births is 7.6 percent or less. There are currently no states that meet that. The current nationwide rate based on the report card is 12.3 percent. There is a map of preterm birth rates for all 50 states.

"The reason for the 'D' is that more than half a million babies are born premature in the United States," says Jennifer Howse, the president of the March of Dimes Foundation. And premature birth is the leading cause of newborn death and many disabilities, including breathing problems, cerebral palsy, and intellectual disabilities, according to the March of Dimes.

"The United States has one of the highest rates of preterm births of industrialized countries in the world, " says Howse. The U.S. surgeon general also unveiled a new PSA on Wednesday, with similar findings.

Even with the "D" grade, there may be reason to be optimistic about the preterm birth rate: Following three decades of increases, there have been two years of decreases at a rate of 4 percent, according to Howse. That means 21,000 fewer babies were born preterm. 40 states and the District of Columbia have improved their preterm birth rates. And eight states improved their grade altogether.

"The good news is that we are getting better," says Dr. Hal Lawrence of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists. He explains some people might choose to deliver preterm: "It can be by patient request or for the timing of delivery for both physician and patient. And, sometimes it's merely for convenience, or so they don't travel too far while in labor."

"States can help lower their rates of premature birth by ensuring that pregnant women have health insurance coverage and by supporting programs that help moms quit smoking during pregnancy," says Howse. She explains, women should not be induced or have an elected C-section before 39 weeks, unless there are medical reasons.

"The consecutive two-year drop suggests a downward trend in premature births, " says Carol Hogue of the Rollins School of Public Health for Emory University. But, she points out the percentage of uninsured women is going up, and that concerns her.

Hogue also thinks that a way to help reduce the rate of preterm births is in spacing. "The ideal space between pregnancies is 18-23 months. If it is six months or less there is a 40 percent increase in preterm birth," Hogue said.

Howse also points to intervention programs that she says work. They combine consumer awareness and education, screenings and referrals for women for treatable and preventable conditions, prenatal care and appropriate care between pregnancies; and professional education.

The March of Dimes says it will issue a report card every year until the target is met.


soundoff (126 Responses)
  1. SoledadoBrien

    How dare U!!
    I am now traumatized by your post........
    I will write a book and look for my new special coming in jan." growing up black and premature in america"

    CNN.....the most trusted news network?

    November 17, 2010 at 09:48 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Mel

      Are you going to explain...or just rant???

      November 17, 2010 at 11:42 | Report abuse |
    • Bubba

      Mr. Gibson, is that you?

      November 17, 2010 at 13:36 | Report abuse |
  2. Steven

    I think the stats on birth data from the US is skewed because of how GOOD our healthcare system is. The reason our premature birth and infant mortality rates are higher than in other industrialized countries is because our prenatal care actual gets babies that have health issues all the way to the point of being born, where as poor prenatal care causes miscarriages earlier on, so they don't even end up in the stats. I want to see that number factored in, and then I think it would show the US in better light.

    November 17, 2010 at 09:49 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Qi

      Survival of the fittest. It is the Tea Party way. Lets build a stronger America

      November 17, 2010 at 09:56 | Report abuse |
    • Easy E

      You've got to be kidding. So, somehow, the data on all of the other industrialized nations wasn't skewed, but that for the US was? Either you are admitting to a conspracy theory, or you're just plain wrong.

      Our healthcare system SUCKS, by any objective measure. We overpay for crappy service. People like you are large part of the reason, because if apologists continue to make excuses, the system can continue to get worse without worry of having to improve. Hurray for mediocrity, the new slogan for the US.

      Why is it so hard for people like you to just admit the problem and start working on a solution?

      November 17, 2010 at 10:02 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      You keep telling yourself that. It's ALL because we are BETTER that we have a higher infant death rate.
      It's what Djibouti says too.
      Doublethink WILL help you with that, as you've shown.
      IGNORANCE IS STRENGTH

      November 17, 2010 at 10:06 | Report abuse |
    • Chris R

      So what you are saying is that France, Canada, and Britain are all monstrous backwaters which have obscenely high rates of still births. And, if I am reading you correctly, this is what is keeping their pre-term birth rate so low. It's an interesting hypothesis but the reality is that the perinatal death rate in the United States is higher than much of Western Europe, Australia, New Zealand, and Japan.

      It's time we faced facts, we *do* have one of the best health care systems in the world *IF* and only *IF* you can afford it. What we don't have is unformly good health care system that is accessible and affordable to all people.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:13 | Report abuse |
    • KDW

      This makes no sense. The US has been shown again and again to have very poor prenatal care. Which is why they think we have high levels of premature birth and infant death. Lower income and lack of prenatal care are the highest risk factors for preterm birth. By your logic they should be the lowest. Doctors are unable to do anything about miscarriages. They just happen, no matter how good your prenatal care is. In the second trimester if you go into preterm labour they can put you on bed rest and give you drugs to stop labour. This is not the same as having a miscarriage. Hopefully these interventions would get a woman to the third trimester but not always. I'm unable to find 2nd trimester miscarriage rates for individual nations but I see no reason why they would be significantly different. Usually if you are having a miscarriage there is not much that can be done.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:14 | Report abuse |
    • PFinn

      The United States also has some of the highest rates in the world of in vitro fertilization, cardiovascular disease and diabetes all of which are risk factors for premature birth. It is easy to point the finger at the health care system, but this "D rating" comes largely in part from our own behavior.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:21 | Report abuse |
    • biglio

      ahhh, just finished wiping my tears off....thanks for the laugh, it's always great to see how americans delude themselves...keep going and electing republicans, more laughs to follow for sure......you'll think you'll have an A country even when you'll get an F, becasue there is where you are heading.....unless you have money of course.......then you'll be able to go to europe or Canada for your healthcare.....ha, ha.....

      November 17, 2010 at 10:25 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      PFinn, why are you here? You know far more than the World Health Organization, the March of Dimes, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
      You should be out making policy!
      Oh wait, your people already are, by claiming 2+2=5 and believing it, whilst KNOWING it equals 4.
      The wonderful world of doublethink.
      *I* have BEEN to the other industrialized nations AND to middle eastern nations. ALL have universal health care and are by far healthier AND pay less overall for a higher level of health care than we do in the US.
      Here, in the US, if you want good health care, you either pay out of pocket great amounts of money or you have good health insurance AND pay moderate amounts of money. By the time we're done, we've paid for the indigent who can't and don't pay for their emergency and routine care (performed in emergency departments) AND our own bills, along with the bill collectors and collection agencies overhead when those people don't pay, mostly because they can't afford to.

      So, let's follow the next logical step in the process, as universal health care WON'T remain in force: If someone makes 45K and under, they receive NO health care, not emergency department, not even a family doctor. Let the poor die off.
      THAT would lower our per capita expenses. Of course, we'll have to have middle class members drop into the poor category to replace the low wage earners and keep the economy stable, but it's about the greater good!
      Rather than NOT listening to the insurance company lobby, who bought the election...

      November 17, 2010 at 10:29 | Report abuse |
    • SKS

      I can't believe so many people take statistics as if they are the holy grail. Steven is, in fact, correct. The truth of the matter is that the definitions we use in the united states for "still-birth" and "live birth" are different than the definitions used in Europe. Google it for crying out loud. It means the data compared is not an apples/apples comparison. It's the use of the data in this story that is inaccurate/misleading/manipulated. In the U.S. we spend a lot of money trying to keep even the most challenging premies alive ... bringing the most challenging pregnancies to birth, etc. because we still believe in the individual here (for now). In Europe, many more people abort at the slightest hint of health issues. If we choose to birth 10 babies that die b/c of these issues, and 10 Europeans aborted – the statistics will tell you exactly that this story wants them to – that our premature birth sucess sucks. Geez people. It's not that hard to research this.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:35 | Report abuse |
    • Julnor

      I always find these studies humorous. It is unfair to compare the US to any other country because we are unlike any other country. Our population is not homogenous like France or Germany. Our culture and values are very diverse. Certainly you cannot compare the folks living in the Louisiana bayou with people livinig in San Francisco. This type of diversity does not happen in other industrialized countries. Different people have different opinions on how much medical treatment they want, and how much they want to leave to God/Nature/Fate. When you have a homogeneous population it is easier to create a one-size-fits-all medical approach that is optimized to that population. It's just not possible here. So these many factors drive all of the "deficiencies" that people blame on our healthcare system such as infant mortality, life span, etc. In reality they are the result of our diverse population, our freedoms and our values.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:37 | Report abuse |
    • Kmjoen230

      its prolly because most mom's lie on their back with cell phones resting on their belly....

      November 17, 2010 at 10:38 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      SKS, you ARE correct that the SAME variables have to be examined. The WHO, NIH and CDC *DO* examine the differences between terms and categories when compiling statistics.
      But DO keep listening to the insurance companies, after all, they are out to protect YOU, not their profits.
      There are thousands of factors that are considered when generating statistics, one must consider all and ensure the points are correctly compensated for, else the reports would be fallacious.
      Or are you going to say that the UN's WHO, multiple US health organizations and even private non-profit groups ALL have some sooper seekret agenda of taking over the world by making commie health insurance or something?
      I have a good idea, travel to JUST Europe. LOOK, talk to people. Learn the facts first hand. THEN, come home, go to our farming communities, go to our inner cities, not just the "good neighborhoods", but to the really lousy ones.
      THEN come back and try to say the same thing.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:43 | Report abuse |
    • Dinak

      EasyE, what everyone is missing out on, once again, is personal responsibility and facts. ! Did anyone look at what the mother did during pregnancy – did she follow her doctor's orders? Did she ignore nutrition/rest guidelines? Everyone just assumes that a good doctor or nurse can cure or prevent anything. Also, how about looking at the ages of the women – do they tend to be the youngest or oldest? Perhaps all the delicate young teens getting pregnant predisposes them to a riskier pregnancy? No real data was included in this article so that we may study the problem rationally.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:50 | Report abuse |
    • SKS

      Wzrd1 ... actually I do agree with most of your counterpoints. Except that the agencies cited are using the data correctly. As an actuarian, I know firsthand that data is a poor representation of reality. You give me a scenario – and I'll give you all the data in the world to make a slam dunk case – then I'll do the same thing for the opposite side. My point was that data is convenient – life is anything but. I am no fan of insurance companies – and have nothing against many other nations' health systems. Still, faced with a life-threatening issue, I'll still be damn glad I live in the U.S.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:53 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      SKS, I know of several small business owners who exceeded their health insurance, ending up selling the entire business (frequently folding and selling out pennies on the dollar, due to time constraints) to pay for emergencies.
      One was a good friend, he lost everything, to include his home, after 30 years in business because his wife, then his grandson had cancer.
      So, I'll say that I'll thank God that I'm here ONLY if I have one HELL of a health insurance plan, otherwise, I'll be surviving the emergency and living in a dryer box. Whereas were I in Europe or even in the middle east, I'd have coverage under universal health care and NOT lose my home.
      But I do agree, I've done the same thing with numbers. While I am lousy at base computation, formulae are easily managed. My standing joke is that I can statistically prove that God doesn't exist and using the same numbers, not only prove God exists, but give God's unlisted telephone number...

      November 17, 2010 at 11:18 | Report abuse |
    • Christine

      You're a guy, what the hell do you know?

      November 17, 2010 at 11:20 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      Christine, I'm a guy too. A guy who has been married for 30 years. Married to a wife who was pregnant 16 times and had two children only.
      A guy who was rushed from a military field problem to get to the hospital to sign a consent form for an abortion, due to an ectopic pregnancy that was near the point of a fallopian tube rupture. The reason for the consent form was because the hospital is a catholic hospital and REQUIRED I give consent for matters regarding the body of MY WIFE. They changed that policy after their medicare and medicaid funds were held, pending determination of forcing religious views upon their patients.
      A guy who actually DID study the problem mentioned in the article, in great detail, after seeing the US embarrassed by the rest of the industrial world's medical standard of care.
      And I'm a guy who found no valid point to your objection. Were you to present facts, beyond "he's a guy", you may have NOT received the sharp edge of my tongue. Because, *I* don't use emotion to argue normally, but use FACTS and REASON.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:38 | Report abuse |
    • BigBen

      Isn't that great? Instead of letting bad genetics die off we get to pass them on. Bad genetics...The gift that keeps on giving and now "FOREVER AND MORE OFTEN"!

      November 17, 2010 at 11:44 | Report abuse |
    • Daina

      Only someone who has never worked in the healthcare sytem in any capacity could gush over how good our for profit care delivery is. All the care you can afford!

      November 17, 2010 at 11:48 | Report abuse |
    • Darth Cheney

      In other words, the US MUST be better than other countries on pretty much everything and there MUST be a reason for this anomaly. You just can't face the simple fact that our health care system and our lifestyles both stink, can you?

      November 17, 2010 at 12:20 | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      SKS - That's an interesting hypothesis - we have higher infant death rates because our abortion rate is lower. But Western Europe has less half the abortion rate that we do (11/thousand versus 22/thousand) and it's infant death rate is much lower than ours.

      November 17, 2010 at 12:22 | Report abuse |
    • JSH

      The article says "women should not be induced or have an elected C-section before 39 weeks unless there are medical reasons". How about "women should not be induced or have an elected C-section unless there are medical reasons"– period? Novel idea, eh?

      November 17, 2010 at 12:37 | Report abuse |
    • baby facts

      It probably is due to many reasons. Infertility treatments usually lead to multiple births which result in early deliveries and babies with clinical issues. Many women are waiting to have babies later in life to achieve career goals. Scheduled C sections that are not medically necessary, but more for convenience or preference of the mother contribute to this as well. The problem is what happens after the baby is born. The cost for a baby in a neonatal unit is astronomical and the outcome of the baby is the most tragic. They are then born with developmental issues that are life lasting and challenging. Education of women, nurses who care for these babies and the parents of these children is crucial. Thanks to the March of Dimes for it's efforts and educating our world!

      November 17, 2010 at 13:18 | Report abuse |
    • yeahsureagain

      "... because how GOOD our healthcare system is...": typical symptom of total brainwashing!!!! Just look at ANY data: our health care system is TERRIBLE. We have the same health care as third world countries. Any industrialized nation have: lower death rate at birth, longer life expectancy, lower obesity, lower cancer rate, NO bankruptcy because of health problems, lower teen pregnancy rates,.... you name it we loose....
      People keep telling in europe, you can't see a doctor,... I just don't get it!!! Not only can you see a doctor but you can see him THE DAY YOU CALL HIM. Better than this, they even make house call and come and see you in your home when you are sick... All medical decisions are made between the patient and the doctor. Here they are made by the insurance companies!!!! Even procedures in the US are archaic: for example, you get X-rays instead of better viewing technology. For upper digestive track viewing, they put you out, then scope you. In other countries, it only takes 10 minutes in a doctor's office: you swallow a tiny pill that has a camera in it and everything is recorded on a computer.... and the list goes on.... SO?? HOW CAN YOU SAY WE HAVE A GOOD SYSTEM???? You might want to travel a bit....

      November 17, 2010 at 14:17 | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      well - is anyone really surprised?

      November 25, 2010 at 23:33 | Report abuse |
  3. The_Mick

    "The United States has one of the highest rates of preterm births of industrialized countries in the world, " says Howse. ++++ We also have near 3rd-world rates for infant mortality. But we don't care: look at all those opposed to universal healthcare, something in effect in EVERY other advanced nation on earth and obviously a benefit to society, business, etc. by providing a healthier populace just as universal education provides a better skilled populace.

    November 17, 2010 at 09:50 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      You just gave away the secret GOP plan. First, repeal the universal healthcare, so that we maintain our third world healthcare scores.
      THEN, roll back education, so we can compete with the third world. Only the wealthy can have a good education. The rest of the populace are the worker drones.
      Read Machiavelli and nineteen eighty four for the details.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:00 | Report abuse |
  4. bbb

    Well, perhaps this lady delivered prematurely because she left her cell phone on her belly all the time.

    November 17, 2010 at 09:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • teresa, oh

      wonderful observation... thanks for the laugh : ))

      November 17, 2010 at 10:10 | Report abuse |
    • Patricia

      Ha Ha. Is this really the most pertinent pic they could get for this article?

      November 17, 2010 at 10:16 | Report abuse |
    • Steve B

      I noticed that too. That can't be a good idea.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:17 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      Nah, it meshes nicely with the TSA view that radiation is good for you.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:40 | Report abuse |
    • Mark

      haha – - nice

      November 25, 2010 at 23:34 | Report abuse |
  5. DYLANSDADDY

    Why?

    November 17, 2010 at 09:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  6. Qi

    The new health care plan. No money, no health care. Tea Party Rules!

    November 17, 2010 at 09:52 | Report abuse | Reply
    • lmd14

      You are so right. Our country has become so selfish. Thats why the rich keep getting richer and the poor keep getting poorer. The middle class is slowly becoming extinct. Im not even siding with a party. Im siding with humanity. The second we started spending more money on campaigns, lobbyists, etc. in this country as opposed to social uplift programs and helping the less fortunate, we started a downword spiral. That is the reason for these birth rates. Bacause the poor are out of sight, out of mind. Its very sad.....

      November 17, 2010 at 10:01 | Report abuse |
  7. Tim

    If you read the release from the MOD, they include avoiding multiples as a strategy to lower the risk of early birth. I take it to mean that they include multiples in their study which I'm sure skews the data. My wife and I had twins (not via fertility treatments) and they were born a month early. They were both healthy and spent zero time in the NICU, so I don't see that as a 'D' grade.

    "There are known strategies that can lower the risk of an early birth, such as smoking cessation, preconception care, early prenatal care, progesterone treatments for women with a history of preterm birth, avoiding multiples from fertility treatments and avoiding unnecessary c-sections and inductions before 39 weeks of pregnancy. "

    November 17, 2010 at 09:54 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      I also looked at the WHO data, which says that the US has DOUBLE the infant mortality rate of ALL industrialized nations.
      The same WHO data shows clearly that we spend 2.7 times per capita what every industrialized nation pays for health care.
      AND we die younger than the rest of the industrialized nations.
      Sorry, numbers don't lie. Facts don't lie.
      But, don't worry, the Republicans said they'd get rid of that silly start of universal health care that Obama started.
      I'm sure they'll cut education further as well, claiming that ignorance is cheaper.
      Then, we can be competitive with the third world labor.
      And keep the wealthy in power.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:21 | Report abuse |
    • KDW

      A baby is considered full term at 37 weeks. Your children were not that premature if they made it to 36 weeks. Survival and morbidity rates are very good for babies born as far along as your kids. However the higher order the multiples the worse off the children are and the greater they likelihood of problems. Higher order multiples often only make it to 27 weeks. The rates of mortality and morbidity are much higher this early on. Higher order multiples are almost always associated with fertility treatments. (I did speech therapy with some natural triplets so it does happen just not as frequently as with fertility) Other countries do not have as much as a problem with the implantation of multiple embryos b/c fertility is covered under their health care systems and is more regulated than in the US.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:22 | Report abuse |
    • KDW

      I have no idea why post ended up here. Nor do I know where the post I was responding to went.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:23 | Report abuse |
  8. Duwayne Anderson

    It amazes me how steadfastly Americans will defend their health-care system, as if they think it is somehow their patriotic duty to defend corporations that make obscene profits. Perhaps the solution is to have more Americans live abroad so they can see how deficient the American system is.

    November 17, 2010 at 09:58 | Report abuse | Reply
    • David

      I agree. We've got a mess here in America, and everybody's too busy making more of a mess to start to clean up. Sadly, no one seems to notice the mess to begin with, like a bunch of ignorant six-year-olds.

      November 17, 2010 at 13:16 | Report abuse |
    • yeahsureagain

      You are sooooo right!!! I have been traveling (50% of my time) oversea and it is incredible how much we fell behind: from health care/medical, education,... to infrastructure,.... We were leading in the 50s but we are STILL in the 50s and every industrialized nation passed us... We are just a third world country with a 20% upper class that enjoy a great life style based on the slavery of the other 80%... and the funniest part of all is that the 80% who are exploited and totally abused WANT IT THIS WAY because they don't know any better and are scared of changes... they are convinced they have it good they way they have it.... amazing!!!! Anybody making under $500K/year should definitely move out as fast as they can.... They would have it so much better in any other civilized country....

      November 17, 2010 at 14:26 | Report abuse |
  9. motherofamiracle

    My first pregnancy ended prematurely at 25wks. I was carrying twins, and did everything right. I took my vitamins, never drank alcohol or smoked, and kept all my prenatal appointments. There were signs that my body was going into preterm labor that I didn't know to look for. I went into labor at 23wks, and had two baby girls at 25wks. They were a pound and a half each. Our oldest only lived for two weeks and our second born came home after 99 days in the NICU. She is doing far better than any doctor predicted, but does suffer some health problems. She has epilepsy and mild cerebral palsy. Academically she's above age level, just a tad behind physically. Education about signs of preterm labor could have saved our baby's life and prevented the great battles our living daughter has faced to get where she is today. We're big supporters of March of Dimes, I really hope this premature birth rate drops.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:00 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Diane

      I am so sorry for your loss. You have a valid point. Women should be educated about their body and any information that will let them know if there is a problem.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:09 | Report abuse |
    • Julnor

      Diane, you are partially correct. You should have stated that "women should educate THEMSELVES about their body". Your education is not someone else's responsibility.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:30 | Report abuse |
    • StayAtHome

      No Julonor, it is the responsibility of your grossly overpaid OB to educate you. If you have ever BEEN to an OB appointment, you would soon realize that you are a number, and that each appointment lasts roughly 5 minutes. They are REACTIVE to your problems-not proactive to preventing them. From a soon-to-be mom of her 4th child, all of which have been high-risk pregnancies. With the best medical care available!

      November 17, 2010 at 12:01 | Report abuse |
    • NellFIshMama

      I disagree StayAtHome...it is our responsibility to educate our selves. If you want more than 5 minutes with your OB, then you should see a CNM...they tend to be more qualified with childbirth anyway, since that is there one and only purpose. In this age of technology and information at our fingertips, there are no excuses. We all need to stop blaming someone else and take responsibility for our own healthcare AND our own nutrition...bu that's another topic.

      November 18, 2010 at 12:17 | Report abuse |
    • NellFIshMama

      I should clarify...both parties are responsible for the education. The OB should continue educating herself to properly educate her patient.

      November 18, 2010 at 19:05 | Report abuse |
  10. Diane

    A lot of premature births are related to mothers who are addicted to drugs. They don't seek out medical attention because they don't want to get arrested. Until something is done to prevent these women from having baby after baby there will be premature births that could have been avoided.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:06 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ReallyCNN

      Diane this is the new CNN go take your actual truthful facts somewhere else......Your post will soon be deleted .....

      November 17, 2010 at 10:09 | Report abuse |
    • Chris R

      Diane, this is a fascinating theory you've put forward. Care to provide any supporting documentation or information to help support that? You *do* have some evidence to support this idea of yours don't you?

      November 17, 2010 at 10:16 | Report abuse |
    • Jessica

      You really just posted that?!?! My oldest was born at 28 weeks and my youngest at 33 weeks both were perfect and all attempts were made to prevent pre term labor the second time to no avail........how DARE you make a comment that was so ignorant UNbelievable I'm sure that there are babies born early due to those circumstances but not everyone don't dare but every precious premmie baby in that catergory!

      November 17, 2010 at 10:37 | Report abuse |
    • gpbritus

      I think it's a plausible theory, but we rely on politicians to collect the stats and there's only 2 things wrong with them...Everything they say and everything they do! The USA health care system fails 10s of millions of people every day in every way unless you are of substantial means or you have one of the few remaining jobs (what a crazy paradigm that is too)

      November 17, 2010 at 10:45 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      Thank you, Diane. I'll let my wife know that she lost 16 pregnancies because she is a drug abuser, even IF she isn't, wasn't and will never be. I wonder just HOW it was missed when she was given a Top Secret security clearance?
      Thanks for the slap in the face for the many, many people in this land who DON'T use drugs and have problems.
      Your knowledge and compassion are a bar easily raised, as your level for both are equal to that of a Jackal.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:47 | Report abuse |
  11. ReallyCNN

    a picture is worth a thousand words...so is the baby trying to make a call to the doctor?
    No signal?

    November 17, 2010 at 10:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      Samuel Clemens one said "It is far better to remain silent and be thought the fool than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt."
      You should consider those words before you post next time.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:49 | Report abuse |
  12. Check the Stats

    One of the reasons that we have such a high premature birth rate is because we have one of the highest induction rates in the world. If doctors would stop inducing just to avoid liability lawsuits, then you would see a drastic decrease in the rate of premature births. Dating a pregnancy isn't an absolute science and obstetricians need to realize that often they do more harm than good (30%+ C-section rate, 85% epidural rate, etc.).

    November 17, 2010 at 10:07 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      Really? Show us those numbers. Because the FACTS don't support your conclusion. Especially our double infant death rate.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:50 | Report abuse |
    • Kara

      You are absolutely right... it always amazes me to see women who "can't take it anymore" ask to be induced at 38 weeks–and their doctors comply! Too often the babies turn out to be of a younger gestational age because the medical professionals assume all women have a 28 day cycle.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:17 | Report abuse |
    • Kara

      @Wzrd1 – Here's the infant mortality rates by country. US has 6.14 deaths per 1000 births, as compared to Germany's 3.95, Spain's 3.42, France's 3.31, and Japan's 2.79
      Not quite double, but bad enough!
      Source: https://www.cia.gov/library/publications/the-world-factbook/rankorder/2091rank.html

      November 17, 2010 at 11:26 | Report abuse |
  13. teresa, oh

    @soledado: the special is in the workds, as we type.... BUT, what makes you think all premies are black? I'm caucasian, I had two premies, one at 32 weeks, one at 35. I had none of the flags, a good job and I had health coverage, wasnt a smoker, drinker, or druggie.

    However, I DO love what you said about the specials. I notice CNN doesnt let a lot of comments go through about a certain ethnic group but yet, they spend TONS of money on "specials" pointing out something we arent allowed to post or have an opinion about.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:09 | Report abuse | Reply
  14. Cat

    We also have a higher rate of multiple births (75% of which are due to assisted pregnancy). Multiples are typically born prematurely.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:12 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      That is a VERY small number out of TOTAL births in the nation. Such procedures are expensive AND not covered by most health insurance plans, hence are not affordable to the vast majority.
      But, very nice try.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:52 | Report abuse |
  15. ruthiesdaughter

    I hate the outdated "survival of the fittest" mantra. That ideology caused more unnecessary death and racist behaviour from supposably white Christians than Terra Nullius. Truly, African Americans and Native Americans can stand up and proclaim that they are a strong people to have survived, and continue to survive this cruelty.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  16. Steve B

    "States can help lower their rates of premature birth by ensuring that pregnant women have health insurance coverage." Its funny how the states that grade the worst here are all Red F-U southern GOP states. There's got to be a correlation how these states continually vote Republican and are the worst in education and health-care I say it once, I say it a million times and listen well; POOR PEOPLE, STOP VOTING REPUBLICAN, THERE'S NOTHING IN IT FOR YOU!!!!!!

    November 17, 2010 at 10:13 | Report abuse | Reply
  17. Jimmy Jurkuff

    Maybe if the ghetto trash that keeps churning out babies like roaches took the time to bother with some pre-natal care. Just saying.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:14 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Chris R

      And how, exactly, are they supposed to afford pre-natal care? Sure, it might be an option to some of the poor that live in the cities but the majority of the poor in the untied states actually live in rural regions (really, look it up). In those areas it's much more difficult to make use of low cost or free health clinics assuming that there are any in the area.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:20 | Report abuse |
    • Wzrd1

      Well, Chris, I guess the poster wants the farmers to stop breeding too. That way, the "ghetto trash" can starve.
      Welcome to the USSA, where we'll hold pogroms against the poor minorities.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:56 | Report abuse |
  18. LWilliams

    While I was pregnant (I gave birth 67 days ago) the NURSES, not the doctor, continually remarked about how much weight I was gaining. They told me "You're not supposed to gain more than 35 lbs as it is bad for the baby". They put a weight limit on me and mentioned it every time I went to weigh in. I asked my doctor about it, as it confused me that they would tell me that I needed to restrict foods that I was craving as it would cause an a lot of weight gain, which was bad for the baby. I wasn't eating a box of doughnuts. I was eating a ton of pineapple (high in sugar and carbs), cherries, strawberries, grapes and mixed nuts. Those were my cravings. When I told the doctor about half-way through the pregnancy he told me "The weight limit is a fairly new guideline, but really you aren't eating poorly and your blood pressure and sugar levels are fine. We don't want scrawny babies, we want fat babies!" I gained 70 lbs by the end of my pregnancy, and I have a healthy baby boy born on Sept 10 of this year. His due date was Sept 11th.
    I think that it is unhealthy to put a weight limit on expecting moms, as long as a healthy lifestyle is incorporated. Walk, do a big of prenatal yoga, eat right and gain as much weight as you need for your baby.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:15 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Educate

      Gaining 70 pounds pregnant or not in a short period of time is extremely dangerous. You have the possibility of putting yourself at risk for gestational diabetes which can lead to premature labor. It's not until this century that women have gained such a significant amount of weight during pregnancies.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:20 | Report abuse |
    • E

      When I spoke with my OBGYN last week, he advised that gaining a lot of weight during pregnancy is not necessarily desirable but it depends a lot on the size of the mother to begin with. I am overweight (i'm a size 18/20) and my doctor advised that I should try to maintain my current weight, or loose 10 lbs during the course of my pregnancy, whereas someone who is at the bottom of their ideal weight range would want to gain at least 35 lbs. He said that babies are like parasites and they will get what they need to be healthy, at the expense of the mother and as long as I have a good supply of nutrients, weight loss will be fine. The greater concern for me would be the stresses (blood pressure, gestational diabeties etc) put on my body for me should I gain weight. He said "malnourished newborns are not something we deal with in this country unless the mom has a serious health problem or addiction."

      November 17, 2010 at 10:30 | Report abuse |
  19. Educate

    Why don't we prevent this altogether by focusing on family planning and education. We need to focus on how important it is to realize that if you don't have the means to insure your health and the health of your child while you are pregnant... you probably shouldn't be having babies. If you're uninsured you're less likely to get prenatal care or go to doctor's visit. And if there is a problem the parent doesn't know until the child is delivered or she miscarries.

    I just don't understand why so many people have children and they just don't have the means to take care of them. It's so selfish. I know this isn't the case for all women. Women who are insured and are able to take care of their children have health problems too like gestational diabetes. I just know family planning will significantly help the situation.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:17 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      I completely agree!
      Listen up, poor people! Die out and don't reproduce!
      Quite brilliant. Of course, we'll eventually run out of people to work at the menial jobs WE don't want to do, but don't worry, the middle class will replace them.

      November 17, 2010 at 10:59 | Report abuse |
  20. Dustin

    You can badmouth the "Report Card" all you want but I think it is A lot better than what it could of been. Being born as a Premature baby I can atest that back in 1986 there was Less than a 4% chance of my Survivial at 5 months. So, 40% is a heck of a lot better than 0%. And for those of you who say "Oh, educate the women about your own body" that's a load of BS. When my mom had me, she Had no idea she was in labor. She bled a lot, went to the Hospital and I was born in the elevator. So goes to show you that your body tells YOU when to give birth. This is something you cannot rush or change because its "conveinant" for Your Yoga or tea time at Starbucks. And you wonder why Sweden is the Happiest place on earth. Yes, we do Need a BETTER healthcare system in place. But that's another story.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:22 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Bubba

      Sweden has one of the highest suicide rates especially amongst young people. Every place has it's problem. Who told you Swedes were happy, the Finns?

      November 17, 2010 at 13:23 | Report abuse |
  21. Big_D

    At least it is better than the ‘F’ we get for accessibility. The USA is confused on why we are broke. Let me explain it. 48% of the worlds military spending is the USA. 65% + of our national budget is spent on military spending. We have bad priorities and we are failing.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      I'm sorry, apparently you didn't get the news.
      There is a WAR going on, hence the expense. Remember those two towers? They didn't just fall down, but were attacked.
      We asked nicely, then not so nicely for the masterminds and financiers of the crimes. Some Taliban guys said no, they are under our protection.
      So, we went after them. Now, we COULD pull out, in 5-10 years to lose MORE large buildings full of people.
      I guess you'd like it, it would create job openings in construction of replacement office buildings!

      Now, WHAT does this have to do with premature births, poor overall health care scores or even universal health care?

      November 17, 2010 at 11:02 | Report abuse |
    • Bubba

      @Wzrd1 He's talking about putting money in the wrong place – that's the connection. You are at war? Because of a terrorist attack? What does that have to do with American forces in Iraq? Ever heard of Oil? Someone blows up buildings, thousands die so you go and spend 100's of billions of dollars to kill hundreds of thousands of people? You are insane.

      November 17, 2010 at 13:28 | Report abuse |
  22. E

    One of the main reasons I see among people I know for premie babies is medical intervention. Women go to their obgyn who uses a wheel to figure out when their baby is due, which is off because they don't know their cycle and didn't actually ovulate at 15 days. Then, if they go much past that date, they are induced which forces the body to do something its not ready to do yet. But that causes a lot of unnecessary pain so they take drugs that numb the body making it more difficult for the body to do what it needs to do. Then, they lay on a bed which doesn't allow for the pelvic bones to rotate like they need to so if they are lucky enough to get to the point of labor, they then fight against gravity and the female anatomy so that the doc isn't inconvenienced and can sit front and center on a stool.

    This is not the way babies come into this world in other countries, both developed and developing. I believe that medical intervention – for convenience or for miscalculated dates, not because the baby or mother are endangered (of course everything should be done to save lives) – are the primary reason so many otherwise healthy babies are born prematurely. Of course there are other reasons for premature birth and I fully support the March of Dimes in their mission to fight to end these causes. However, the American method of labor and delivery is seriously misguided and should be reconsidered to the benefit both mom and baby.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:23 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Wzrd1

      Sorry, but your entire thesis here is based upon incorrect data. The "wheel" is used initially to ESTIMATE conception/due date. THEN, fetal SIZE measurements are made. For inducing, factors are considered, size of the fetus, lung development (last organs to develop (measured via amniocentesis)), cervical "ripening" and a few other factors that all involve the physician's clinical judgment. It is a pity you never bothered to acquire REAL information, but instead chose to pick the information from a website that is fraught with incorrect information.
      Now, add to that the fact that a woman's pelvic bones don't "move" the way that you describe, but open at the junction held in place by the pelvic ligament, which "softens", permitting that area to spread, to permit the fetus to be born. Hence, it doesn't matter if mom is on a bed, bench, stool or even a mat on the floor. Unless the iliac crest is being compressed, the pelvis will open. Again, incorrect information.
      Now, try LEARNING the truth. Either talk to an OB/GYN or buy Benson & Pernoll's Handbook of Obstetrics & Gynecology, the definitive source used GLOBALLY on the subject by clinicians.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:12 | Report abuse |
    • Kara

      @Wzrd1 are you aware that fetal size measurements can be off? It is not an exact science! Many doctors don't even do dating ultrasounds.
      Also, some doctors that assume they are inducing at 38/39 weeks won't bother to do an amniocentesis to check for lung development and are completely surprised when they have a 36 weeker on their hands.

      Why are you fighting this as a contribution to premature births? Do you REALLY think this doesn't happen?

      November 17, 2010 at 11:45 | Report abuse |
    • E

      @Wzrd – I was speaking about women I know. Not women around the world. In MY experience, MY friends who go past their "due date" have the healthiest babies. They also have the least complicated deliveries with the least amount of medical intervention.

      MY friends have been so terrified of the birth process by society and the medical establishment that they head to the hospital at the first sign of labor, where they get hooked up to drugs and lay on a bed rather than move around. In MY experience, once a woman gets hooked up to an epidural and lays on a bed, labor stops and medical intervention becomes necessary.

      As for your discussion on the iliac crest, pray tell how it is NOT compressed if a woman is laying on her back with the weight of the baby and placenta resting on her pelvis? Apparently, this is great enough weight to stop blood flow (which is why pregnant women are discouraged from sleeping on their backs), it would seem to me to be great enough to impeded the pelvic mechanics necessary to give birth.

      Also, none of MY friends who were induced or had C-Sections had amniocentesis (which is not without its own set of risks and complications). The c-sections had been scheduled weeks in advance – based on that wheel date that you claim is used only as an "estimate" – and performed whether or not the baby was ready.

      Therefore I stand by my thesis – based on MY anecdotal evidence, medical intervention contributes to premature births. While it is not the sole contributor, or even a significant contributor, it should be considered as a cause of premature births among otherwise healthy mothers and babies.

      November 17, 2010 at 12:40 | Report abuse |
  23. Sybaris

    House Speaker-elect John Boehner

    "This health care bill will ruin the best health care system in the world!"

    November 17, 2010 at 10:32 | Report abuse | Reply
    • PharmD

      There is still plenty of room for improvement..I also have read Obama's health care bill and still not sure yet.In my opinion it will cost more than what is calculated.We will see how it goes.I do hope the doughnut hole is CLOSED next year for seniors on medicare part d.Harry Reid Said it live on c-span....doughnut hole or gape coverage in medicare part d gone in 2011!

      Very few healthcare professionals and seniors saw this "doughnut" hole when the 2004 medicare D bill was passed.I just hope there are not any surprises like this i OBAMACARE! Good day everyone!

      November 17, 2010 at 10:48 | Report abuse |
    • sally

      I laughed out loud when I heard him say that...then I realized he was serious

      November 17, 2010 at 12:20 | Report abuse |
  24. mrgmorgan56

    The March of Dimes doesn not know what it is talking about. Our son was born three months premature and he is now a healthy 14 year old. Get your facts straight.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:38 | Report abuse | Reply
    • E

      Seriously? Because your child is healthy means that March of Dimes – which studies hundreds of thousands of instances if not more – is wrong? Wow.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:01 | Report abuse |
    • Kara

      Also, the article is not saying anything about the "quality" of babies born prematurely, only that too many babies are born premature. Your comment supports that since you yourself have had a premature baby!

      November 17, 2010 at 11:49 | Report abuse |
    • JMS

      My son was three months early and is now a healthy 10 yr old thanks to the research funded by the March of Dimes that resulted in the care premies receive.

      November 17, 2010 at 12:05 | Report abuse |
  25. Joe

    As an ER physician seeing these results, I am convinced it is mainly due to our behaviors ( drug abuse, poor hygiene, obesity etc..)

    November 17, 2010 at 10:51 | Report abuse | Reply
  26. LoveLife

    Educate, you sound scary to me. In fact, you sound like I did when I was in college and believed that only certain people should be having babies. Now, as a mother of 3, I interact with moms and babies all the time and find it so sad to see the competition in purchasing power as a means of providing for children.

    There have been forced sterilization programs in our nation's shameful history (and that of Nazi Germany) to keep "unfit" parents from procreating. It sounds like you want to include the poor in this as well? What a cruel, cruel way to think. I hope your heart grows to accommodate those different from yourself.

    November 17, 2010 at 10:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  27. Amanda

    i went into labor exactly at 24 weeks and my baby girl only lived 30 hours. probably for the better for her in the long run but so painful. i did everything right. no drugs of any kind, took my vitamins, went to my doc visits. no one could tell me why it happened.

    November 17, 2010 at 11:04 | Report abuse | Reply
  28. Christine

    I love how almost all the comments being made are by men. What the hell do men know, unless your a ob docter, they don't know crap about pregnancy and prental care. How many of you know that women are more likely to die during pregnancy in California then Bolivia. How shocking is that, and it's that way because people don't have access to prenatal care that can catch problems. Everyone should be able to get the help they need regardless of income, or is this still the stone age where men are more important?

    November 17, 2010 at 11:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  29. Lee Greenwood

    Government-sponsored healthcare? We don't need no socialized medicine. We have the the best healthcare system on earth. For those who have access to it.

    November 17, 2010 at 11:20 | Report abuse | Reply
    • boocat

      Bull! We are rated 37th in the world in health care. France is number 1.

      November 17, 2010 at 11:22 | Report abuse |
    • Softship

      Would you please describe what the term "best" means in this context?

      November 17, 2010 at 11:49 | Report abuse |
  30. Dinak

    Aren't women told by pro-choice groups that there is no life within the uterus until a baby is actually born – even in the last trimester, when abortions are allowed for any reason? Aren't all efforts to define a fetus as a living being fought tooth and nail by pro-choice groups? So, why, then, would a pregnant teen, for instance, think that she has to do anything differently or carefully while pregnant? Until it is born, it is a worthless nothing. That's the problem with pro-choice advocates – they sends mixed and confusing messages to women on the value of a fetus. No wonder women here do not think what is inside them is important enough to take special care of.

    November 17, 2010 at 11:31 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Dinak

      Obviously, I meant to type "send" not "sends."

      November 17, 2010 at 11:34 | Report abuse |
  31. Cheri

    This is because they induce so manypregnant women because they are a couple days past their due date rather than let their body go into labor when its ready. Just because there is a due date doesnt mean the baby should really be born then. The baby still needs growing in the womb if the woman is not going into labor. There has never been a woman that is pregnant forever, your body knows when its time to let the baby be born. If woman would read more books on pregnancy rather than listening to the Dr that just wants you to have the baby now they would know they should wait for the baby to be ready to leave and their body will go into labor naturally.

    November 17, 2010 at 11:40 | Report abuse | Reply
    • ksr

      fyi, premature births are not caused by induction on or after a due date. that is actually the definition of not being premature. it's possible controversial but is definitely not relevant.

      November 17, 2010 at 12:12 | Report abuse |
  32. Mel

    I've noticed that less and less mothers are making the sacrifice to stop drinking and smoking during pregnancy which could add to this number. It's very sad to see "mom-to-be" taking a cigarette break during work or worse yet, staying on recreational drugs while pregnant. The number isn't the worse it could be but let's see what it will be in 2020.

    November 17, 2010 at 11:40 | Report abuse | Reply
  33. imaginaryfigure

    I can also say that it should meet a figure of 0 premature births and give it an F...but that would be unrealistic. This study should compare to other countries... it has no concept of benchmark

    November 17, 2010 at 11:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  34. Healthcare Professional

    I am saddened by so many in our country that believe that our healthcare system is "the bes"t in the world. This is pure delusion. The statistical data is available for the public to view, we just need to take our blinders off to see it.
    Unfortunately, we are a nation comprised of obese individuals with poor health habits. Couple that with the fact that there are many living in poverty as well as many "working poor" who do not have adequate healthcare, and you have a recipe for disaster.

    November 17, 2010 at 11:53 | Report abuse | Reply
    • PharmD

      I have had the pleasure of working with healthcare professionals from around the world and hear about their countries and their healthcare.We are not as bad as some people are saying but WE ARE NOT THE BEST and there are areas we really need to improve on.I am actually watching a web video on what to expect with the new healthcare amendment.

      I would love nothing more than to say I can fix it but I can't.The person who directed me to this website participated in a think tank group and submitted ideas for the new healthcare plan but none of them were part of the amendment.

      Harry Reid stated live on c-span that the doughnut hole for seniors on medicare part D would be closed in 2011..I am really not sure that Harry understood the gap/doughnut hole but I hope he was being truthful

      Most countries take care of their elderly ....we should too....

      November 17, 2010 at 13:02 | Report abuse |
  35. ksr

    These numbers don't take into account a couple of important factors. The US healthcare often enables a mother with a difficult pregnancy to carry her child long enough to make it to be a premature baby rather than a miscarriage/still birth. Those premature births are actually huge successes, not problems. Additionally, many other countries do not count a child as being a live birth if it dies within a day. The US considers all even remotely viable births as "live births" which again ups our prematurity and infant mortality rates. Lastly, for better or worse, there is much more artificial insemination and invitro producing multiples which tend to be at a higher risk for prematurity.

    November 17, 2010 at 12:11 | Report abuse | Reply
  36. John

    You mean in America the land of the "best health care in the world" say it isn't so!

    November 17, 2010 at 12:17 | Report abuse | Reply
  37. Brian

    This article is incomplete. This problem is concentrated in certain ethnic groups. Also, one of the main causes of premature birth is chlamydia.

    November 17, 2010 at 12:21 | Report abuse | Reply
  38. JRP

    Another example of the lie the Republican's keep feeding us about the "best healthcare system in the world".
    HA. Not by any measure other than expenditure per person.
    Look it up – we rank near Cuba.

    November 17, 2010 at 12:23 | Report abuse | Reply
  39. Bobo

    Yes, but we have an "A+" for Jesus! Doesn't that count for anything! And come on! Isn't it an AMERICAN RIGHT for health care providers to make as much of a profit as possible. Some kids might die, but can't we think about them for a change?

    November 17, 2010 at 12:25 | Report abuse | Reply
  40. Scott

    Heres the deal for all you healthcare wackos. First of all, lifestyle is what determines an individuals health. Collectively, our lifestyle and behavior is THE WORST in the world when it comes to health (excluding the small demographic of 2 year old smokers in Indonesia). Now why should we go around blaming healthcare, payers or providers (that means insurance companies and hospitals) when we are the problem.

    Also, I don't understand the hate for healthcare insurance companies. They operate on a profit margin that is similar to all other insurance businesses. Sure there are the freak occurrances where "preexisting conditions" or whatnot allow an insurer to drop coverage on a person. It doesn't happen as much as Micheal Moore fans would like to think, by the way, does anyone else hate watching "Sicko" and seeing him yell about injustice and high cost of healthcare while his neck fat is jiggiling and causing mild changes in weather.

    On the other hand, yes we do need reform to the system. A "universal healthcare system" is not the problem. We dont need to model our system after someone elses (who has 1/10th population of our own nation). Its time for elected officals to get down and actually come up with a creative solution that is right for America. Who am i kidding?

    November 17, 2010 at 12:37 | Report abuse | Reply
    • MichaelMoore

      we must BLAME someone...we must..it is the new american way.........blame blame blame...what is personal responsibility?

      my own poor health would bankrupt any Health Insurance company ...but hey I pay my 40 dollars a month it is a shame my future treatment will be close to a million......oh oh ...government bailouts for the insurance companies?

      kidding aside would you if you were an ins. salesman insure Michael Moore...should his premium be the same as yours?
      Will Moore be like John Candy!

      November 17, 2010 at 13:24 | Report abuse |
  41. Jim

    This can't be true! We have the BEST healthcare system in the world. I know this because the GOP says we do.

    November 17, 2010 at 12:48 | Report abuse | Reply
  42. Bryan

    Miscarriage = "God"-induced abortion

    November 17, 2010 at 12:50 | Report abuse | Reply
  43. GPraz

    I am a President of a company that specializes in the treatment of premature babies with medical iassues. This country we keep saying is NUMBER 1 iis number one in quite a few things you don't want to be number one. The high degree off premature births is not fudging of numbers and other "creative" math. We have a fragmented poor health care system. Theonly industrialized country that does not provide health care for all it's citizens. We have a high degree of hunger and it's related cousin obesity (from substandard nutrition) which allows nearly 25% of our children to live in poverty. To make matters worse we still have social policies that almost promote young people to have children. I could go one and on. Spend on day in an emergency room in Camden NJ and you can see the problem. It's a disgrace to be honest. Hey on the bright side good for bussiness!!

    November 17, 2010 at 12:51 | Report abuse | Reply
    • Bristol

      I had a child at 16 ......Because my parents didn't teach me about sex ed.
      My mom was too busy with her acting career.....

      November 17, 2010 at 13:48 | Report abuse |
  44. Elizardbeth Crowin Big Dog Medical gossip spreader

    **********************************************BREAKING NEWS*****************************************
    *****************************************************************************THIS JUST IN *****************************************
    *********************FDA BANS "Blackout in a can"**************************************************
    ****************************************************************MORE TO COME LATER******************************

    November 17, 2010 at 13:44 | Report abuse | Reply
  45. johannes

    The legal definitions vary and are widely undefined in the US. More details on these statistics need to be released, not just a summary that does not even define how the numbers are calculated.

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Stillbirth#Legal_definitions_of_stillbirth

    November 17, 2010 at 13:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  46. NellFIshMama

    The problem is Western medicine! Doctors think that they know it all, and we allow them to think that by doing whatever they say! This isn't the 20th century anymore folks...back when the one doctor in the town WAS the most educated and knowledgeable man and everyone went to him for answers. It is now a time for us to take responsibility for OUR OWN HEALTHCARE! Childbirth is absolutely NOT a medical event. It is absolutely natural and happens every second all over the world. God/Evolution (whichever you choose to believe) made the female body to be capable of birthing a child, just as every other mammal on Earth! Don't get me wrong here, there is absolutely a time when childbirth should become a medical event, when mother/baby is seriously at risk. However, Western medicine as convinced us to believe that any childbirth is putting mother/baby at risk. After a c-section with my first (caused from what I believe was the Western way...start labor, go to hospital, put in bed on my back, epidural, c section!), I was determined to have my second child naturally. I was refused by so many doctors, because of the c section. It is MORE risk to have a repeat c section, then to have a VBAC. So many women are "forced" to have a repeat, which is typically scheduled between 37-39 weeks, which leads to premature births. Doctors...just let us have our babies when our babies are ready to be born! No pitocin, no epidurals, no stripping of membranes, etc. etc. Women...TAKE RESPONSIBILITY, birth your child like every other creature on Earth (and especially like women in other countries!) Natural childbirth is the MOST AMAZING experience ever and is such a lost art...back when a birthing mother had her mother, and aunts, and sisters, and the midwife, surrounding her, supporting her through 24, 48, 72 hours of labor. Now...you get to 24 hours of labor and they cut you open. I'm all for a rise in Certified Nurse Midwives to be the ones present during the birth process...not the doctor who needs to speed things along so he can get to the next patient.

    November 18, 2010 at 07:57 | Report abuse | Reply
  47. Dunn

    Yet another example of laziness and rationalization in America. It is easier to go in for a procedure than to give birth (the lazy part). We think we are the best at everything regardless of the evidence (the big ego rationalization part). The greatest country in the world and yet we have forgotten how we got here. We were hungry and determined as a nation. We are now satisfied as a nation. It won't last forever. All great societies get there, fall and are reborn.

    November 18, 2010 at 12:19 | Report abuse | Reply
  48. Ric Iannolino

    It was not lost on me that FASD was not mentioned as a cause for prematurity. The high rate of use of alcohol among pregnant women is no accident. Most women who drink do drink during pregnancy most of them before they know they are pregnant. Drinking is a problem for the US but that is taoo topic. After all alcohol and arms are the greatest revenue sources in our economy.

    November 22, 2010 at 22:00 | Report abuse | Reply
  49. Cyril Goyne

    Coming improvements to treatment will advantage some recipients : but could make coverage less affordable for people with higher incomes. Thanks partly to this approach year's health-care renovate, everything from benefits and enrollment regulations to the options available is going to be affected start Jan. 1.

    November 29, 2010 at 16:19 | Report abuse | Reply

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Get a behind-the-scenes look at the latest stories from CNN Chief Medical Correspondent, Dr. Sanjay Gupta, Senior Medical Correspondent Elizabeth Cohen and the CNN Medical Unit producers. They'll share news and views on health and medical trends - info that will help you take better care of yourself and the people you love.