Premature birth more common in US Hispanic women

Preterm births are more common among Hispanic women than other ethnic groups in the US.

These are the findings of a report from March of Dimes, which showed that almost a quarter of preterm births in the US occur among Hispanic women.

Mothers of Cuban heritage experienced the highest rate of premature birth, with 14.5 per cent of babies born before their due date. They were closely followed by women of Puerto Rican, Central and South American and Mexican descent.

The gap between premature birth rates for white and Hispanic women has been growing steadily in the US since 2005. Rates have been falling overall, but are declining at a slower pace in the Hispanic community.

Babies born to Hispanic women also accounted for a fifth of all infant deaths in the US in 2010, the study finds.

According to the report, it is crucial that access to healthcare for Hispanic women is increased and appropriate information given out.

More research is also required to explain why some risk factors are so much higher in the Hispanic community, it adds, while women should be given more education about taking multivitamins and maintaining healthy diets.

Posted by Paul RobertsonADNFCR-2094-ID-801730337-ADNFCR