Birth Defects Prevention Month 2015

Making Healthy Choices to Prevent Birth Defects - Make a PACT for Prevention

January 2015 is National Birth Defects Prevention Month!  The theme is "Making Healthy Choices to Prevent Birth Defects - Make a PACT for Prevention."  The National Birth Defects Prevention Network (NBDPN) is pleased to provide you with the following resource materials to promote birth defects awareness and prevention.


This packet was developed in collaboration with many partners, including the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), and Teratology Society (TS). NBDPN’s goal for 2015 is to continue to increase awareness that birth defects are "Common, Costly and Critical" and to offer actionable steps that can be taken by professionals, community groups, and the public to prevent birth defects. Materials developed by NBDPN can be tailored to your specific agency's mission, needs, and capacity. Materials from the other organizations featured can be obtained directly from the organizations themselves.

Although not all birth defects can be prevented, steps can be taken to increase a woman’s chance of having a healthy baby. Please encourage all pregnant women and those who may become pregnant to:
  • Plan ahead
    • Get as healthy as possible before becoming pregnant.
    • Get 400 micrograms (mcg) of folic acid every day.
  • Avoid harmful substances
    • Avoid drinking alcohol and smoking.
    • Be careful with harmful exposures at work and home.
  • Choose a healthy lifestyle
    • Eat a healthy diet that includes fruits, vegetables, whole grains, low fat dairy, and lean proteins.
    • Be physically active.
    • Work to get medical conditions like diabetes under control.
  • Talk to your doctor
    • Get a medical checkup.
    • Discuss all medications, both prescription and over-the-counter.
    • Talk about family history.

Please take the time to become familiar with the materials and complete the evaluation form (https://www.surveymonkey.com/s/2015BDPMfeedback).

If you should have questions about National Birth Defects Prevention Month, please contact Mary Knapp (Mary.Knapp@doh.state.nj.us) or Cara Mai (cmai@cdc.gov).

Thank you in advance for your support in promoting January as National Birth Defects Prevention Month.

Sincerely,
Mary Knapp and LaShunda Williams
NBDPN Education & Outreach Committee Co-chairs

 

  © 2016, National Birth Defects Prevention Network