NTD Resources

Folic Acid Resources for Health Care Professionals
“Quantitative surveys conducted over the past four years have identified a gap between the high level of knowledge, and relatively low level of practice, among health care providers with respect to making specific recommendations about folic acid (FA), and with respect to the provision of preconceptional care.” 
--Needs Assessment Among Health Care Practitioners Regarding Gap between Guidelines and Practice With Respect to Folic Acid, 2006, March of Dimes, CDC Report

How do we close this gap? Listed below are links to existing national and state programs developed to address educating the healthcare professional in regards to folic acid and neural tube defects as well as tools to assist in narrowing this gap.


Learning Modules



Needs Assessment Among Health Care Practitioners Regarding Gap between Guidelines and Practice With Respect to Folic Acid, 2006, March of Dimes, CDC Report

This qualitative needs assessment was intended to identify reasons for the gap between knowledge and practice; identify how providers who do incorporate practice guidelines regarding folic acid and preconception care are able to do so; assess barriers to change; and brainstorm strategies or interventions that would lead to significant improvement in implementation of these guidelines within health care practices.

Archived presentation of results:

Health Care Knowledge and Practices Regarding Folic Acid, United States, 2002-2003

Results of two surveys given to 1111 HCP’s in 2002/2003 to assess their knowledge and practices regarding folic acid use for neural tube defect prevention. March of Dimes/CDC.


Improving Preconception Health: Women’s Knowledge and Use of Folic Acid
Since 1995, the March of Dimes has commissioned Gallup to conduct surveys to measure women's awareness and behavior relative to folic acid and other pre-pregnancy health issues. Several questions relate to HCP’s.




Got a Minute? 

Developed by the National Spina Bifida Association, informational only, has a version that can be read in 1 minute.


ABCs of Folic Acid Counseling

Developed by National Spina Bifida Association in collaboration with CDC.  Offers CEU credit for nurses and health educators.

Advocating For Folic Acid: A Guide for Health Professionals

An interactive on-line module whose goal is to train health professionals and students to counsel on the benefits of folic acid in the prevention of birth defects and other conditions. Developed by Association of Schools of Public Health (ASPH) and the March of Dimes.

Birth Defects Prevention: Realizing the Full Potential of Folic Acid

This archived webinar will seek to increase knowledge and awareness of folic acid and its role in birth defect prevention and the opportunities that exist in public health practice to increase the consumption of folic acid among women of childbearing age.


The National Preconception Curriculum and Resources Guide for Clinicians

On-line CME modules under development by UNC-School of Medicine and Albert Einstein School of Medicine in conjunction with the CDC. Covers folic acid and neural tube defects as well as other preconception issues. CEU’s offered.

  • Module 1: Preconception Care: What It Is and What It Isn't
  • Module 2: Every Woman, Every Time: Integrating Health Promotion Into Primary Care
  • Module 3: Maximizing Prevention: Targeted Care for Those with High Risk Conditions
  • Module 4: In Between Time: Interconceptional Care for Those with Previous Poor Outcomes
  • Module 5: Babies to Adolescents: Incorporating Preconception Health Promotion into the Pediatric Visit




Folic Acid Everyday Toolkit

Originally produced for the Florida Department of Health and the March of Dimes, this training kit guides health educators, nutritionists and discussion leaders through individual and group lessons and activities designed to educate women, especially those considering pregnancy, on the benefits of folic acid in a healthy diet. The kit contains a facilitator's master notebook, which includes lessons plans, discussions topics and handouts; an interactive CD-ROM with a PowerPoint slide presentation; and videos on folic acid (10 minutes) and preventing neural tube defects (22 minutes).