According to the March of Dimes’ annual report, premature birth rates are increasing again, in Florida and across the nation, after several years of steady decline. Premature birth is a complex medical and social issue. “We haven’t figured out how to prevent prematurity,” said Dr. Jose Perez, MEDNAX-affiliated neonatologist and corporate medical director at Winnie Palmer Hospital in Orlando, Fla. While researchers sift through human genes to find a potential culprit, other studies are pointing to women’s overall health and access to care as some of the underlying factors leading to premature birth. “Despite the persistence of preterm births, there’s a big effort by neonatologists to improve the quality of life in these babies through collaboration and finding best practices,” said Perez. “So even though preterm birth rate doesn’t go down, the goal is to improve outcome.”

View the full article at Orlando Sentinel

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