Sixty-four percent of Maryland mothers who completed a 2001 survey conducted by
the Department of Health and Mental Hygiene (DHMH) reported one or more medical
complications during pregnancy, and 20 percent of these women were hospitalized
for one or more days.
This and other important data are contained in a new report issued by DHMH
called Maryland PRAMS Report, 2001 Births.
The 86-question survey asked randomly selected mothers who gave birth in
2001 about their health, behaviors, quality of care, and experiences in the time
before, during and shortly after their pregnancies. Participants completed the
survey by either mail or phone.
The surveys are funded by a federal Centers for Disease Control and
Prevention (CDC) program known as PRAMS (Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring
Other key findings include:
- Forty-two percent of all pregnancies were unintended.
- Of mothers who were trying to get pregnant, four percent used assisted
- Seventy-eight percent of mothers began prenatal care during the first
trimester (<13 weeks) of pregnancy and less than one percent received no
care. The primary reasons given for not receiving early prenatal care were
difficulty in obtaining an appointment, and lack of awareness of the pregnancy.
- Nine percent of women smoked during pregnancy and eight percent reported
- Four percent of mothers reported being physically abused by a husband or
partner during pregnancy.
- Thirteen percent of newborns were admitted to a neonatal intensive care
- Seventy-six percent of infants were breastfed after delivery and 64 percent
were breastfed four weeks or longer.
- Sixty-one percent of infants were usually placed on their backs to go to
- Twenty percent of women reported being at least moderately depressed during
the postpartum period.
- The report covers the responses of mothers who delivered between January 30
and December 31, 2001 and represents a 70 percent response rate for that time
period. Responses before January 31 were not used since they were below the 70
percent response rate that is recommended by CDC for data analysis.
- PRAMS, which started in 1987, is designed to obtain information that may
help to prevent infant mortality and low birth weight. Currently 31 states
and New York City partner with the CDC in PRAMS.
- Copies of the report are available on the Internet by clicking on the
report’s name found under the ‘What’s New’ category at www.fha.state.md.us/.