If You’re Pregnant, Don’t Drink Alcohol
At the 10th annual Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD) Awareness Day on September 9, 2009, providers, advocates, and SAMHSA staff and grantees came together to discuss the consequences of drinking alcohol while pregnant.
More importantly, the event focused on how to best help those who have an FASD and how to reach at-risk women of childbearing age to inform them that no amount of alcohol is safe to drink while pregnant.
“Advances in knowledge about FASD are significant,” said Frances M. Harding, Director of SAMHSA’s Center for Substance Abuse Prevention, in her opening remarks. “We have interventions and programs—what we need is more awareness among doctors and patients.”
SAMHSA is working hard to spread the word about FASD and drinking while pregnant. The FASD Center for Excellence provides funding in four different categories:
- Diagnosis and Intervention
- Parent-Child Assistance Program
- Screening and Brief Intervention
- Project CHOICES.
In addition, the center’s Web site offers 90,000 resources in its database and a special Native Initiative. The site also is fully navigable in Spanish.
More publications, including fact sheets and an illustrated book for children ages 8 to 15, will be available in the coming months.
According to the center, FASD affects an estimated 40,000 babies every year in the United States.
For more information, visit SAMHSA’s FASD Center for Excellence. You can also call 1-866-STOPFAS (1-866-786-7327) to speak to an information specialist.