Birth Defects Prevention Month 2008


January is Birth Defects Prevention Month!

It is our pleasure to provide you with materials for Birth Defects Prevention Month 2008, which were developed by the Education and Outreach Committee of the National Birth Defects Prevention Network (NBDPN).

2008 Packet Materials:

Additional Materials :

We have chosen "Preventing Infections in Pregnancy" as our topic of focus for this year's packet. Infections in pregnancy contribute to the number of preventable birth defects that occur each year. While some infections have been associated with birth defects, others have been linked to additional serious outcomes for mothers and infants including uterine infection, miscarriage, premature labor, or stillbirth.

Although infections are common and familiar to many, there is a lack of knowledge among the population about the serious outcomes of infections during pregnancy and how they can be avoided.  Please take the time to become familiar with the materials.  We hope you find them useful to the educational outreach and prevention activities that you conduct in your community.

Although the focus of this year's packet is "Preventing Infections in Pregnancy" please continue to encourage all pregnant women and those who could become pregnant to: consume 400 micrograms of folic acid daily; know their family history; have a check-up from a health care provider prior to conception; seek reproductive genetic counseling, if appropriate; manage chronic maternal illnesses such as diabetes, seizure disorders, lupus or phenylketonuria (PKU); avoid alcohol, nicotine, and illicit drugs; ensure that prescription medication and herbal supplements are safe at the time of conception and during early pregnancy; avoid harmful occupational and environmental exposures; and ensure protection against domestic violence.

We would like to know if these materials are of value and how you use them. Please complete the evaluation form. We are especially interested in any innovative activities you undertake, that can be replicated by others, in working for the primary prevention of birth defects. Materials developed by the Education Committee are available electronically and can be tailored to your specific agency's mission, needs and capacity. Please contact us if we can be of assistance in this regard. Materials from the other organizations can be obtained directly from them.

If you should have questions about the materials, please contact Mary Knapp or Cara Mai. We hope you find the information and materials useful in promoting your own campaigns for Birth Defects Prevention Month, January 2008.

Phil Cross , President, NBDPN
Mary Knapp, Education Committee Co-Chair, NBDPN
LaShunda Williams, Education Committee Co-Chair, NBDPN

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