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FYI: Prevent birth defects :

January 3, 2017

January is National Birth Defects Prevention Month. This year, the focus of the AAP-supported campaign is “Prevent to Protect: Prevent Infections for Baby’s Protection.”

A baby is born with a birth defect every 4.5 minutes. Pediatricians can help by promoting vaccinations and educating patients and families on how to avoid infections. Talk about healthy food preparation to prevent salmonella and listeriosis and dangers of raw milk; explain how to prevent congenital Zika virus; and discuss why pregnant women should not change the cat litter box.

Pediatricians also can immunize adolescents against sexually transmitted diseases (STDs) and educate them on how STD prevention lowers their risk of birth defects in their child-bearing years.

A resource packet is available from the Academy, Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, March of Dimes and Teratology Society that includes an infographic and educational and professional resources. Visit http://nbdpn.org/bdpm.php. Find more professional resources on the AAP Bright Futures website, https://brightfutures.aap.org. To join the discussion on social media, follow #Prevent2Protect.

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