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State of Alaska

Health Indicator Report of Preterm Birth

Nationally, preterm birth is the leading cause of neonatal deaths not associated with birth defects. Babies born preterm also have increased risks of long-term morbidities and often require intensive care after birth. Average hospital stays for preterm infants without complications are three times longer than a term infant; and for a preterm birth with complications, hospital stays are over eight times longer.

Notes

** Data not available

Data Sources

  • [http://dhss.alaska.gov/dph/VitalStats/Pages/default.aspx Alaska Health Analytics and Vital Records], Division of Public Health, Alaska Department of Health and Social Services
  • National Vital Statistics System, National Center for Health Statistics, U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Data Interpretation Issues

Alaska populations are from the [http://laborstats.alaska.gov/pop/popest.htm Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development, Research and Analysis]. Gestational age is based upon last normal menses (LNM). Starting in 2014, the National Center for Health Statistics moved to using the obstetrical estimate of gestation at delivery (OE). All data are presented using the LNM, unless noted otherwise.

Definition

Preterm birth is the live birth of an infant before 37 weeks of gestation. The preterm birth rate is the number of live births that occurred before 37 weeks of gestation, divided by the total number of live births over the same time period.

Numerator

Number of live births that occurred before 37 weeks of gestation in the resident population.

Denominator

Total number of live births in the resident population.

Healthy People Objective: Total preterm births

U.S. Target: 11.4 percent

How Are We Doing?

A preterm birth is one in which the delivery occurs before 37 weeks of gestation. Since 2006, this percentage has decreased 8 percent. White mothers continue to have the lowest overall preterm birth rate, while Asian/Pacific Islander mothers and American Indian/Alaska Native mothers have the highest.^1^ In 2015, the rate of preterm births was 10.3% for all Alaskans and 14.1% for Alaska Native mothers.[[br]][[br]] ---- {{class .SmallerFont 1. Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Division of Public Health, Health Analytics and Vital Records Section. Alaska Vital Statistics 2015 Annual Report. [http://dhss.alaska.gov/dph/VitalStats/Documents/PDFs/VitalStatistics_Annualreport_2015.pdf]. Accessed February 7, 2017. }}

How Do We Compare With the U.S.?

In 2015, 10.3% of infants were born preterm in Alaska, compared to 11.3% in the U.S.

What Is Being Done?

Prevention of unintended pregnancy as well as early and continuous prenatal care may improve infant outcomes. According to the U.S. Surgeon General, women who quit smoking before or during pregnancy reduce the risk of preterm delivery and LBW. Furthermore, women who stop smoking by the first trimester have infants with weight and body measurements comparable with those of nonsmokers. Studies suggest that smoking in the third trimester is particularly detrimental to fetal growth.^2^ For most women, however, no known primary prevention measures exist, a fact underscored by the increasing occurrence of preterm births. Some studies have shown that women with vaginal infections such as bacterial vaginosis (BV) and trichomoniasis are at increased risk of preterm delivery. Controlled studies of antibiotic treatment, however, have not been shown to reduce risk.^3^ Antenatal corticosteroid therapies may accelerate fetal lung development and thereby reduce some complications of prematurity such as respiratory distress syndrome and infant mortality.^4^[[br]] [[br]] ---- {{class .SmallerFont 2. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. The Health Consequences of Smoking: A Report of the Surgeon General. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion, Office on Smoking and Health. 2004. 3. Dodd JM, Flenady V, Cincotta R, Crowther CA. Prenatal Administration of progesterone for preventing preterm birth. Cochrane Database Syst Rev 2006:CD004947. 4. Women's, Children's, and Family Health Title V needs Assessment Checkup Vol. 2 No. 5. Low Birth Weight and Preterm Births in Alaska. Anchorage, AK. Maternal and Child Health Epidemiology Unit, Section of Women's, Children's, and Family Health, Division of Public Health, Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, June 2007. }}

Health Program Information

Alaska is participating in the Collaborative Improvement and Innovation Network (CoIIN) to Reduce Infant Mortality and improve birth outcomes. Through CoIIN, Alaska is using evidence-based practices to focus on factors that may influence the rate of infants born preterm; such as smoking cessation (before, during and/or after pregnancy), substance use cessation, and preconception/interconception health. The fourth focus area is safe sleep, important for the health of infants who are born preterm. For more information on CoIIN: [http://imcoiin.community.nichq.org/]
Page Content Updated On 04/16/2018, Published on 04/16/2018
The information provided above is from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services' Center for Health Data and Statistics, Alaska Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health (Ak-IBIS) web site (http://ibis.dhss.alaska.gov). The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Sat, 21 July 2018 from Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Center for Health Data and Statistics, Alaska Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health web site: http://ibis.dhss.alaska.gov ".

Content updated: Mon, 16 Apr 2018 10:53:40 AKDT
The information provided above is from the Alaska Department of Health and Social Services' Center for Health Data and Statistics AK-IBIS web site (http://ibis.dhss.alaska.gov/). The information published on this website may be reproduced without permission. Please use the following citation: " Retrieved Sat, 21 July 2018 1:53:44 from Alaska Department of Health and Social Services, Center for Health Data and Statistics, Indicator-Based Information System for Public Health Web site: http://ibis.dhss.alaska.gov/ ".

Content updated: Mon, 16 Apr 2018 10:53:40 AKDT