National Birth Defects Prevention Month 2017 – Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection

newbornMEDVIRON is joining with the National Birth Defects Prevention Network (NBDPN) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to increase awareness that preventing infections before and during pregnancy can protect babies from being born with birth defects. January is National Birth Defects Prevention Month. The theme for 2017 is “Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection”

Every 4½ minutes, a baby is born with a birth defect in the United States. Not all birth defects can be prevented, but women can increase their chances of having a healthy baby by preventing infections before and during pregnancy.

This year we are encouraging all women to Prevent to Protect by taking the following steps:
o Properly prepare food.
o Talk to your healthcare provider.
o Protect yourself from animals and insects known to carry diseases such as Zika virus.
o Maintain good hygiene.

By following these Prevent to Protect guidelines, women can reduce the risk of having a child with a birth defect and also reduce their risk of pregnancy complications such as early pregnancy loss, prematurity and stillbirths.

About 120,000 babies are affected by birth defects each year in the United States, with approximately 800 cases occurring here in Michigan in recent years. Not only can birth defects lead to lifelong challenges and disabilities, they are also the most common cause of death in the first year of life and the second most common cause of death in children aged one to four. Public awareness, expert medical care, accurate and early diagnosis, and social support systems are all needed for prevention and treatment of these all-too-common and sometimes deadly conditions.

Infections are a major cause of birth defects. Research has proven that up-to-date vaccinations, safe sexual practices, good hygiene, and knowing how to protect yourself from insect, animal and food-borne sources of infection can reduce the risk of having a child with a birth defect.

The complete 2017 NBDPN Birth Defects Prevention Month information packet, including this year’s primary message of prevention, Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection, and other resources for the public, and for professionals, is available online at:
Further information regarding NBDPN can be obtained at
More information on birth defects can also be found at

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