THR and March of Dimes To Prevent Pre-term Births

ARLINGTON, Texas — Texas Health Resources has committed $50,000 over five years to join with the March of Dimes to decrease pre-term births by 15 percent. Pre-term births have increased 27 percent in the past 22 years. As a foremost provider of maternity services in North Texas – with almost 25,000 babies born at Texas Health hospitals in 2003 – Texas Health is a natural stakeholder in this partnership devoted to helping families have healthier babies.

Prematurity/low birthweight is the leading cause of death in the first month of life. It is also a major determinant of developmental delays, chronic respiratory problems, vision and hearing impairment. Prematurity/low birthweight is the third most expensive condition treated in hospitals, with the average lifetime cost of a premature baby after discharge being an estimated $500,000.

The five-year program will involve research, awareness and education plus fundraising events in communities throughout North Texas.