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Franklin County Progesterone Promotion Project

Preterm births, defined as those occurring before 37 weeks gestational age, is a leading cause of death for newborns, which is significantly more prevalent in Franklin County than in Ohio and the U.S.

Franklin County health care providers are working together to assist pregnant women who have had a previous preterm birth. Our community-wide goal: To provide pregnant women who have had a previous preterm birth with a therapy that has been proven to increase the length of her pregnancy and give her baby a healthier start to life.

Our providers are working to identify pregnant women who have had a previous preterm birth and provide her with prenatal therapy using a hormone called progesterone.  To date, the strategies of the collaborative have included:

  • Establish a community "Progesterone Promotion" collaborative and generate support among local pregnancy clinics;

  • Establish an agreed to community-wide protocol;

  • Identify pregnant women with previous preterm birth(s) and enroll them in the Progesterone Promotion Project;

  • Progesterone Project: Provide women with weekly prenatal therapy injections of 17 Alpha Hydroxyprogesterone Caproa (17P) or with daily progesterone suppositories;

  • Therapy is supported by at least six trials, which have shown to reduce risk of recurrent preterm birth by approximately 35%

  • Construct a web-based reporting system for community-wide quality improvement purposes;

  • Progesterone Community Forum: Meet every six weeks to monitor results and share best practices.

Results and Observations

Since data collection began in January 2011, as of December 2016, 2,063 women have participated in the program. Of the 2,063, 1,482 have delivered with an average gestational age of 36 weeks and 6 days.

Progesterone Educational Brochure

Through the web-based "Community Data Entry and Reporting System", providers are able to monitor the number of women who do not participate in the progesterone project.  Nearly 50% of the women not participating have declined.  In an effort to decrease the number of women who decline to participate, providers have developed and are distributing an educational brochure.  The brochure describes the success of progesterone for women who have had a prior preterm birth. Click here to view the educational piece in its entirety.

Ohio Better Birth Outcomes

The progesterone project is one part of a broader initiative, Ohio Better Birth Outcomes, which seeks to reduce incidents of pre-term birth in the community.  For more information on other OBBO initiatives, click here.



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