What is the March Of Dimes?

The March of Dimes was established in 1938 by President Franklin Delano Roosevelt and went on to fund the development of the first safe and effective polio vaccines before turning to its mission to improve the health of babies.

The mission of March of Dimes is to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. March of Dimes carries out this mission through programs of research, community services, education and advocacy.

About 4 million babies are born each year in the United States, and all have benefited from March of Dimes lifesaving research and education. Including newborn screening, polio vaccines and the Apgar score.

North Carolina has one of the highest rates of preterm births in the country, ranking 30th. Each year more than 14,000 babies are born too soon, too small or too sick in the state – the equivalent of more than 1,046 kindergarten classrooms. North Carolina’s premature birth rate is 9.7 percent overall but in Winston-Salem, we have a 12.9 percent premature birth rate, which is one of the worst in the state for cities with the greatest number of births. Premature birth accounts for more than one-third of all infant deaths. More than 860 babies die before their first birthday.

Premature birth can happen to any woman no matter how well she takes care of herself before and during her pregnancy.

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