04.10.12 The state has started requiring doctors to include information on whether the babies they deliver are pre-term and, if so, why the baby was delivered ahead of schedule.
The process of generating a birth certificate will require doctors to input this information, said J.T Lane, Louisiana's Department of Health and Hospitals Assistant Secretary for the Office of Public Health. This is how the state will hold doctors accountable to adhering to the state's Birth Outcomes Initiative.
For some time, the state has been working with hospitals to compile data on risk factors for each birth, infant mortality and pre-term births. A pre-term birth is one in which a baby is delivered within 39 weeks.
For a birth to be registered now, physicians must include the gestation period for the baby.