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Spring 2014
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Apgar Score: Prematurity by the Numbers
Number of babies born prematurely (less than 37 weeks) in the U.S. each year
540,000 or 1 in 8

Preterm birth rate in 2007
12.7%

Rhode Island’s preterm birth rate in 2007
12%

Rate at which preterm births have increased since 1990
20%

Increase in late preterm births (34–36 weeks) since 1990
25%

Preterm birth rate among whites
11.7%
Hispanics
12.2%
blacks
18.5%

Preterm birth rate among women under age 20
14.7%
age 20-29
12.1%
over age 40
16.8%

Total annual cost of prematurity
$26 billion

Sources: March of Dimes PeriStats; Centers for Disease Control and Prevention; Institute of Medicine

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