ND & MN ranked among best states to have a baby, according to recent study
Beth Neis had twins on October 4th at Essentia Health in Fargo.
She’s one of many moms in the area who’ve recently given birth, according to those at Sanford Health.
“Last year was a little bit more flat,” explained Sanford Health’s Family Birth Center Inpatient Director Jackee Haak. “Everybody was kind of waiting and seeing with the pandemic what was actually going to happen, so our birth rates were more static, and now they’re picking back up again.”
Fortunately for these moms, Minnesota and North Dakota are the second and sixth best states, respectively, to have a baby in, according to the study.
“I can see, you know, why we would score at the top. I mean, the things that they looked at were access to care, insurance premiums, schools, daycares,” Essentia Health OB-GYN Dr. Stefanie Gefroh said.
Haak added, “I have lived in other states and I’ve worked in other areas and we do specifically— I will say at Sanford in Fargo, we have a lot of sub-specialties.”
Although both states scored well overall, they differ in a few categories.
For example, North Dakota had one of the highest infant mortality rates, but that may not be an accurate representation. “It all has to do with population,” Gefroh said. “So, you know, if we have even one maternal death or one fetal death, just based on our low numbers compared to other states overall, it’s going to really skew your data.”
Minnesota had some of the best scores for health care access and baby and family-friendliness. North Dakota scored second best in the country for cost.
Beth says her experience giving birth in Fargo has been outstanding, especially in comparison to others she knows in other states. “Afterwards, the follow-up is really excellent as well. They don’t just, like, discharge you from the hospital and drop you there, but they make sure to follow up with you postpartum, which I think is really important.”
Giving birth during a pandemic can be stressful, but those in the medical field say there’s reason for expecting and new moms to have some ease of mind.
“Studies are showing that if moms are getting the [COVID-19] vaccine during pregnancy, that babies are born with the antibodies, which I think is the coolest,” Haak said.
To view the entire study and its findings, click here.