March of Dimes, a non-profit organization for pregnancy and baby health, released the 2015 March of Dimes Premature Birth Report Card. The 2015 Premature Birth Report Card provides rates and grades for major cities or counties in each state, and Puerto Rico. It also provides preterm birth rates by race and ethnicity for each state and applies a disparity index that ranks states.
Premature Birth Report Card grades are assigned by comparing the 2014 preterm birth rate in a state or locality to the March of Dimes goal of 8.1 percent by 2020. The Report Card also provides city or county and race/ethnicity data to highlight areas of increased burden and elevated risks of prematurity. The preterm birth rate used to assign the grade shown at the top of the report card is from the NCHS 2014 final natality data. The city or county preterm birth rates and grades are calculated from the NCHS 2013 final natality data, while the preterm birth rates by race/ethnicity are calculated from the NCHS 2011-2013 final natality data.