State-Based Tracking SystemsPuerto Rico
Program: Puerto Rico Birth Defects Surveillance and Prevention System and the Folic Acid
Organization: Puerto Rico Department of Health
Projected Period: February 2010–January 2015
Project Director: Margaret Wolfe, MPH
The Puerto Rico Birth Defects Surveillance and Prevention System and the Folic Acid
Campaign was created in 1995. This program is a population-based active surveillance system that monitors about 48,000 births per year in Puerto Rico. It collects information from multiple sources to identify babies born with birth defects up to six years after delivery. The system tracks babies born with birth defects and uses the data for prevention and access to support services for families and children born with birth defects in Puerto Rico.
Grantee Goals and Activities
- Share current birth defects prevalence data with public and private stakeholders.
- Involve health specialist clinics in data reporting of birth defects cases to increase completeness of surveillance.
- Include data on other birth defects (metabolic disorders) from partner programs to provide a more complete picture of infant health.
- Based on prevalence of specific conditions, develop prevention strategies such as creation of school curriculums, educational materials, and community health fair presentations.
- Generate culturally appropriate prevention messages to the residents of Puerto Rico with emphasis on high risk populations, such as women with diabetes, to reduce birth defects.
- Lead preconception care and prevention activities that emphasize the importance of healthy habits among reproductive-aged women.
- Promote the use of early intervention services.
- Evaluate and enhance referral activities to improve access to services.
- Estimate the rate of successful referrals by evaluating the referral protocol.
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities
Division of Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities
1600 Clifton Road
Atlanta, GA 30333
TTY: (888) 232-6348
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