health education

'Low Dose, Big Benefits': March Of Dimes Pushes Aspirin To Fight Preeclampsia


March of Dimes, whose stated mission is “to improve maternal and infant health outcomes for all moms and babies,” is now going all out to combat preeclampsia -- a condition that causes a pregnant woman’s blood pressure to rise, leading to potential preterm birth, heart disease and even death. Preeclampsia affects one in 25 U.S. pregnancies, says the nonprofit.

A major deterrent to preeclampsia, however, can be a simple regimen of low-dose aspirin (LDA). March of Dimes cites studies showing that pregnant people at increased risk for preeclampsia who take low-dose aspirin may reduce that risk by 15% and the risk of preterm birth by 20%

Yet, according to a new survey conducted by The Harris Poll for March of Dimes, nearly 20% of families had never heard of preeclampsia. That figure rises to 25% among Blacks, one of the higher risk groups. The survey also found that only 20% of families are extremely or very familiar that medical interventions like LDA can reduce the risks.



Thus has been born “Low Dose, Big Benefits,” a multiyear March of Dimes initiative developed by branding agency SJI Associates and funded with the help of pharma firm Sanofi, the HCA healthcare system, home testing brand Clearblue, and consumer product brands Goldbug, The Honest Company and Philips Avent.

March of Dimes tells Marketing Daily that this campaign will be of similar scale to previous efforts like driving awareness of taking folic acid before and during pregnancy to reduce birth defects, and educating families about the importance of staying pregnant for at least 39 weeks to reduce problems with elective Cesarian births.

Targeted to both consumers and healthcare providers like OB-GYNs, midwives, and pharmacists, “Low Does, Big Benefits” will include TV PSAs, digital ads and a host of other resources, including, as brand ambassador, Allyson Felix, 11-time Olympic track and field medalist and co-founder/president of shoe marketer Saysh.

Here’s a video in which Felix shares her own history with preeclampsia during her first pregnancy and how she successfully went on a LDA regimen before having her second child.

The national campaign – which will nonetheless begin by focusing on California, Florida, New York, Pennsylvania, and Texas, where the highest number of births occur -- also includes educational resources, live online events, and a toolkit where numerous partners can download such materials as printable handouts and social media posts. 

March of Dimes has also teamed up with the Society for Maternal-Fetal Medicine, which it said will “amplify” the importance of ‘Low Dose, Big Benefits” among its 6,500 members who include clinicians and researchers.

In addition, March of Dimes says its quality improvement team will work with doctors and clinical staff to implement a preeclampsia screening process for pregnant patients within the first 12 weeks of pregnancy or at their first prenatal visit.

Just last week, the American Heart Association released results of a study showing that a new screening algorithm combining maternal history, ultrasound data and several tests for blood markers may better predict the majority of preeclampsia cases in the first trimester of pregnancy.

With May as Preeclampsia Awareness Month, the Preeclampsia Foundation also had an announcement: its Cuff Kit program, which since 2020 has distributed 30,000 at-home blood pressure kits to pregnant women, was name da winner in the U.S. Health and Human Services department’s Hypertension Innovator Award Competition, designed to combat maternal mortality and improve maternal and infant health, focusing on underserved communities.

“Low Dose, Big Benefits” falls under March of Dimes’ “It Starts with Mom” platform, whose other causes include doulas, vaccines, maternal mental health, and postpartum life.
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