Born too soon: preterm birth in Europe trends, causes and prevention
Murphy, Margaret M.
World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe
It is estimated that 15 million babies annually are born too soon, which is before 37 completed weeks of gestation and that this number is rising (1). Complications of preterm birth are the leading cause of death among children less than 5 years of age and this accounted for nearly one million preventable deaths in 2013 (1). The United Nations Millennium Development Goal (MDG) 4 targeted a two-thirds’ reduction of under five deaths by 2015 and recommended interventions to prevent preterm birth and to improve survival for preterm newborns (2). While infant and maternal mortality rates have witnessed some improvements, the burden of mortality and morbidity in the perinatal period remains a major concern (3). This is due in part to the high number of births per year, the young age of the maternal and infant population harmed by adverse perinatal events and the long-term sequelae of adverse pregnancy events such as very preterm birth or severe hypoxia (4).
Complications , Preventable , Interventions , Hypoxia , Preterm birth , Neonatal death
Murphy, M., McLoughlin, G. (2015) "Born too soon: preterm birth in Europe trends, causes and prevention", Entre Nous, 81, pp. 10-12.
© 2015, World Health Organization Regional Office for Europe