This week (Feb 7th through 14th) is Congenital Heart Defect awareness week. As you know from my previous posts about having a Heart Baby it is a subject very near and dear to my family. We have been through a lot and want to make everyone more aware of this epidemic whenever we can.
I stole this from a facebook friend:
For those of you who have healthy heart children and do not understand why I keep posting so much about CHD Awareness Week, just try to imagine what we are going through for just a second.
It is one of the most helpless, awful moments of our lives as parents and only a portion of the battle.
- Congenital Heart Defects are the #1 birth defect worldwide
- Congenital Heart Defects are the #1 cause of birth defect related deaths worldwide
- About 1 out of every 100 babies are born each year with some type of Congenital Heart Defect in the United States (approx. 40,000/year)
- Each year worldwide 100,000 babies (under one year old) will not live to celebrate their first birthday
- Each year in the United States approximately 4,000 babies (under one year old) will not live to celebrate their first birthday
- The cost for inpatient surgery to repair Congenital Heart Defects exceeds $2.2 billion a year
- Of every dollar the government spends on medical funding only a fraction of a penny is directed toward Congenital Heart Defect research
- Though research is ongoing, at least 35 defects have now been identified
- Although some babies will be diagnosed during gestation or at birth, sometimes the diagnosis is not made until days, weeks, months, or even years after. In some cases, CHD is not detected until adolescence or adulthood
- It is a proven fact that the earlier CHD is detected and treated, it is more likely the affected child will survive and have less long term health complications
I was also thrilled to hear that the state of MN is now working on requiring every newborn to have their oxygen level checked in the hospital. This will not diagnose the condition but it will detect that there is a problem. This is great news! The earlier these are detected the better!