Premature Births in US Increase for Second Year
A new report shows the number of babies born prematurely has been increasing in the United States since 2014.
The report by the National Center for Health Statistics says preterm births have increased by 2 percent in 2016 and 1.6 percent in 2015 after seven years of decreases. A baby is considered preterm if born before the 37th week of pregnancy.
Stacey Stewart is president of the nonprofit March of Dimes. The group works to end preterm birth and other birth defects. She says the increase is "an alarming indication that the health of pregnant women and babies in our country is heading in the wrong direction."
Stewart calls on members of the U.S. Congress to increase access to quality prenatal care. She also wants government officials to promote proven ways to help reduce the risk of preterm birth. She notes that the U.S. Senate is considering a health care bill that many Americans believe would change coverage for maternity and newborn care.
Stewart says now "is not the time to make it harder for women to get the care they need to have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies."
About 400,000 babies in the United States are born preterm each year. The World Health Organization estimates that 15 million babies are born preterm each year around the world.
No one knows all the causes of preterm birth. But researchers have discovered that even late-term premature babies face developmental challenges that full-term babies do not. Studies show that health problems related to preterm births continue through adult life. These problems include chronic lung disease, developmental handicaps and vision and hearing losses.
The National Center for Health Statistics report shows that preterm rates rose in 17 of the 50 U.S. states. None of the states reported a decrease.
The incidence of low birth weight, a risk factor for some serious health problems, also rose for a second straight year in 2016.
I'm Jonathan Evans.
1.preterm birth 早产
Preterm birth, Caesarean section and intrapartum complications were associated with neonatal death.
2.related to 与...有关
Light industry is closely related to agriculture.
3.birth defects 出生缺陷
There was no positive evidence that any birth defects had arisen as a result of Vitamin A intake.
4.prenatal care 产前护理
The centre gives advice and prenatal care to pregnant women.
1.Stewart calls on members of the U.S. Congress to increase access to quality prenatal care.
access to 通向...入口；接近
They now have access to the mass markets of Japan and the UK.
He has a security clearance that allows him access to classified information
2.Stewart says now "is not the time to make it harder for women to get the care they need to have healthy pregnancies and healthy babies."
make it harder for 使...更困难
See them as people, so it'll make it harder for me to do anything.
This would make it harder for companies to borrow.
美国国家健康统计中心的报告显示，经过7年的稳步降低后，美国早产儿人数2015年增长1.6%, 2016年增长2% 。
史黛西·斯图尔特（Stacey Stewart）是非营利组织美国出生缺陷基金会主席 。该组织致力于消除早产和先天缺陷 。她说，这一增长迹象“令人担忧，说明我们国家孕妇和婴儿的健康走向是错误的” 。
斯图尔特呼吁国会增加孕妇获得优质孕期保健的机会 。同时，她希望政府推广有效的方法降低早产的风险 。斯图尔特指出，美国联邦参议院正在考虑新医保草案，许多美国人认为该法案将扩大孕妇和新生儿的护理范围 。
美国每年有大约40万名新生儿属于早产儿 。而据世界卫生组织估计，全世界每年约有1500万新生早产儿 。
没有人知道造成婴儿早产的所有原因 。不过研究人员发现，即便是临近足月的早产儿也会面临足月新生儿所没有的发育问题 。多份研究显示，早产引起的健康问题会伴随至成年 。其中包括慢性肺病，发育迟缓以及丧失视力、听力等问题 。
美国国家健康统计中心的报告还显示，美国50个州中有17个州的早产率都呈增长趋势 。几乎所有的州都未出现早产率下降的现象 。