‘’Public awareness of the problems encountered by premature born babies and their parents is very low so it is important to educate everyone in our society’’, said the Croatian Parents’ Club of premature babies ‘’Palčići’’ on the World Prematurity Day marked on the 17th of November.
According to data, around 2,000 children are born prematurely in Croatia annually, whilst 400 of them need intensive care. Premature babies are children born before the 37th week of pregnancy. The preterm births death rate has been constantly decreasing, however, children born too early are very likely to suffer from severe and numerous long-term problems.
Furthermore, premature birth is one of the leading causes of mortality of newborn babies in developed and underdeveloped countries, and the second, right after pneumonia, cause of death of children up to the age of five.
At the initiative of the Parents’ Club of premature babies ‘’Palčići’’, in 24 Croatian cities involved in the marking of the World Prematurity Day purple balloons were released into the sky as a symbol of premature born children in Croatia (the purple colour represents sensitivity and exceptionality).
The first international awareness day for preterm birth on the 17th of November was created by European parent organizations in 2008. It has been celebrated as the World Prematurity Day since 2011.