The Survey of Childbearing Women (SCBW) was conducted from 1988 through 1995 in collaboration with CDC, the National Institute of Child Health and Human Development, and state and territorial health departments. This unlinked survey, which was concluded at the end of 1995, measured the prevalence of HIV infection among women who gave birth to live infants in participating states and territories of the United States.
Maternal antibodies, including antibodies to HIV, cross the placenta during pregnancy and are present in the blood of a newborn at approximately the same concentration as in the mother. In the SCBW, residual dried blood specimens that are routinely collected on filter paper from newborn infants for metabolic screening programs were tested for HIV antibody after the removal of all personal identifiers. Data from the population-based SCBW can be compared with other national health data, such as acquired immune deficiency syndrome (AIDS) surveillance data, to describe the dynamics of the HIV epidemic among women of reproductive age.
The last full year of data collection for the SCBW was 1994; partial data were available for 1995. Prevalence rates were generally higher in the Northeast and in the South for both years (Tables 4 and
5; Figures 12 and
13). The collection of race/ethnicity data differed by state. For states that reported race/ethnicity data for 1994, prevalence rates were consistently higher among blacks than among whites or Hispanics (Figure 14).
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