Low birth weight
Significance of this indicator:
Babies born weighing less than 5.5 pounds (i.e., 5 pounds, 8 ounces) are considered low birth weight. According to the March of Dimes, low birth weight babies are at increased risk for serious health problems as newborns, lasting disabilities and even death. Advances in newborn medical care have greatly reduced the number of deaths associated with low birth weight. However, a small percent of survivors develop intellectual disabilities, learning problems, cerebral palsy and vision and hearing loss.
How we are doing:
The percent of babies born at a low birth weight in Pueblo County has increased since 2008 from 8.1 percent to 9.2 percent in 2009 and 2010. While the proportion of babies born at a low birth weight in Pueblo County was lower than the state in 2008, the rate exceeded state figures by four-tenths of a percentage point in 2009. Rates for both the state and county have remained stable in 2009 and 2010.
After a slight increase in year 2011 and 2012, Pueblo experienced a full percentage point decrease in 2013 (from its highest rate in 2011). The rate of low weight births for Colorado as a whole has continued to remain consistant over the same six year span at an average of 8.8%.
What the data tell us:
Babies born weighing 5.5 pounds or less (less than 2500 grams) per 100 live births.
Health Statistics Section, Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment. Provided by the Colorado Children's Campaign and/or National KIDS Count Program.