WTVO/WQRF - The U.S. pre-term birth rate is at a 15 year low, but the nation is still getting a "C" on a March of Dimes report card.
The main reason: America's 11.5% pre-term birth rate is the highest among industrialized countries. The state with the lowest rate of pre-term births was Vermont. Mississippi had the highest rate at about 17%. Illinois finished with 12%. The grades are based on the March of Dimes' goal of 9.6%.
According to the organization, pre-term birth is the leading cause of newborn deaths. Babies who survive are sometimes faced with serious health problems.