March of Dimes: US premature births on the rise since 2015
According to statistics from the March of Dimes, the number of premature births in the United States has been on the rise since 2015 and accounts for 10% of births nationwide.
It accounts for 9% of all births in New York. Dutchess and Westchester counties experience higher rates at 9.2% and 9.1%, respectively.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention says reducing premature births is a national public health priority. Babies who survive can have breathing issues, digestive problems and bleeding in their brains.
The March of Dimes stats show that the problem is worse amongst different races and ethnicities.
Between 2015 and 2017, American Indian and black woman saw a striking 11.4% and 12.3% percent, while white women were under 8%.
Dr. Edmund LaGamma, of Marie Fareri Children’s Hospital, says the facility needs to add care areas and upgrade nurses’ stations to account for more patients.
"There are many things that are more amiable to intervention,” he told News 12. “Access to health care, getting good maternal health during the pregnancy, blood pressure control.”
He says he wishes there wasn't a need to expand, hoping the number of severe cases goes down.