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To the editor:
Premature birth is the No. 1 killer of newborns and
a major cause of serious health problems. It costs society billions
of dollars every year. Nearly half a million babies are born
prematurely every year, and the number is rising. Here in Illinois,
23,368 babies were born prematurely in 2003. Between 1993 and 2003,
the rate of infants born preterm in Illinois increased more than 7
percent. The preterm birth rate in Logan County is 10.6.
That is why the March of Dimes has designated November as
Prematurity Awareness Month and Nov. 15 as Prematurity Awareness Day
-- to let us know that premature birth is a crisis in our country
and to bring people together to help give all babies their nine
The March of Dimes is leading a national effort to save babies
from premature birth by funding research to find the causes and by
supporting local programs that offer hope and help to families with
a baby in intensive care.
[to top of second
column in this letter]
As part of that effort, the March of Dimes wants women to know
that there are steps they can take to reduce their risk of premature
birth. For example, one of the best things a woman can do for her
baby is to get a medical checkup before she gets pregnant. If a
woman is healthy, her baby has a better chance of being born healthy
and on time. It's never too late to find out what to do to have a
healthy baby. Visit
www.marchofdimes.com and click on "I want my 9 months" to learn
Everyone can visit
www.marchofdimes.com during November -- Prematurity Awareness
Month -- and any time of year to find out what they can do to help
give all babies their nine months.
March of Dimes
Division board chair
(Posted Nov. 11, 2005)
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