Louisiana Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) is an ongoing, population-based risk factor surveillance system designed to describe maternal behaviors and experiences that occur before, during, and immediately following pregnancy. The program is administered by the Louisiana Department of Health, Bureau of Family Health in conjunction with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Information collected by Louisiana PRAMS is used by health professionals, policy makers, and researchers to develop and modify programs and policies designed to improve the health of mothers and infants.
Louisiana PRAMS provides both quantitative and qualitative data on:
- Factors that influence pregnancy outcomes, including health insurance status, chronic conditions, pregnancy intention, contraceptive use, prenatal care, alcohol use, tobacco use, physical abuse, and life stress
- Mothers’ experience of pregnancy complications, including hypertension, diabetes and hospitalizations
- Maternal experiences and behaviors after the baby is born, including depression, maternity leave experiences, breastfeeding, contraceptive use, tobacco and alcohol use, and safe infant sleep practices
How does Louisiana PRAMS work?
Each month, approximately 200 PRAMS questionnaires are mailed to a random sample of women in Louisiana who have recently given birth. Completed surveys are returned to the Office of Public Health where answers are grouped to provide representative data for the entire state. If no response is received after three survey mailings, mothers are contacted by phone and interviewed. Participation in the study is entirely voluntary and every woman selected to complete the survey has the right to refuse without loss of any services.