March of Dimes
March of Dimes is a campaign to prevent premature birth.
Premature birth (birth before 37 weeks of pregnancy) and its complications are the #1 cause of death of babies in the United States. Babies who survive premature birth often have long-term health problems, including cerebral palsy, intellectual disabilities, chronic lung disease, blindness and hearing loss. In the United States, about 380,000 babies are born prematurely each year. The preterm birth rate (the percent of babies born before 37 weeks each year) is 9.8 percent in the United States. This means 1 in 10 babies is born too soon. The U.S. preterm birth rate is among the worst of high-resource nations.
The March of Dimes Prematurity Campaign aims to reduce premature birth in the United States and to give every baby a fair chance for a healthy full-term birth. Yet this fair chance is not reality for all babies. The preterm birth rate rose to 9.8 percent in 2016, up 2 percent from 9.6 in 2015, marking the second consecutive increase after steady declines over the previous 7 years. The March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Card reveals racial/ethnic and geographic disparities signifying that babies have a higher chance of a premature birth based simply on race/ethnicity and zip code.