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Div. of Media Relations
1600 Clifton Road
MS D-14
Atlanta, GA 30333
(404) 639-3286
Fax (404) 639-7394

March 12, 2002
Contact: CDC, Media Relations
(404) 639-3286

Press Release

CDC awards funds to improve monitoring of birth defects

A total of $3.2 million is being awarded to 20 public health agencies by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to improve birth defects surveillance. Each site will receive between $100,000 and $190,000.

The funding will enable public health programs to develop, implement, and/or expand community-based birth defects tracking systems and programs that work to prevent birth defects, and support activities to improve access to health services for children with birth defects.

“Birth defects are the leading cause of infant mortality in the United States, accounting for more than 20 percent of all infant deaths,” said José Cordero, MD, MPH, Director of the CDC National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities (NCBDDD). “Understanding the prevalence and changes in trends of birth defects will lead to a better understanding of possible changes, and will monitor the effectiveness of our prevention activities.”

NCBDDD strives to improve the health of children and adults by preventing the occurrence of birth defects and developmental disabilities, promoting optimal child development, and promoting the health and wellness among children and adults who have a disability. The center’s many responsibilities include conducting research to determine the causes and prevention of birth defects and developmental disabilities, maintaining and expanding support for state-based monitoring, and providing information and education directly to health care providers and public health professionals. NCBDDD also works closely with international organizations and entities developing strategies and programs for reducing the number of birth defects and developmental disabilities.

The following states will receive funding:
University of South Alabama

Department of Health and Social Services

Department of Public Health and Environment

District of Columbia
Department of Health

Department of Health

Department of Health

Cabinet for Health Services

Department of Health

Department of Community Health

Department of Health

Department of Health and Senior Services

Department of Public Health and Human Services

North Carolina
University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill

New Hampshire
Trustees of Dartmouth College

New Mexico
Department of Health

State Department of Health

South Carolina
Greenwood Genetic Center

Department of Health

Department of Health

West Virginia
Department of Health and Human Resources


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) protects people's health and safety by preventing and controlling diseases and injuries; enhances health decisions by providing credible information on critical health issues; and promotes healthy living through strong partnerships with local, national, and international organizations.


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This page last updated March 12, 2002

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