University Of Alaska putting pregnancy tests in bars
When stopping the rise of a disorder, it's often best to go to the source, and that's exactly what one university plans on doing. HLN says:
"The University of Alaska is putting pregnancy tests in the bathrooms of 20 bars and restaurants across that state. Did you know that Alaska has the highest rate of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in the country?"
According to the Mayo Clinic, there is no known amount of alcohol safe to consume while pregnant.
The disorder causes brain damage and physical defects including joint deformities, smaller sized hearts, poor memory and attention, and social problems related to an impaired ability to identify consequences.
The state has had a long history of trying to combat, what has been called by doctors, one of the most preventable causes of birth defects.
The disorder has been especially prevalent in the state's Native American population. Between 1996 and 1998 the native population experienced 63.1 cases per 10,000 live births. By 2002 that figure had dropped to 32.4, but the state, as a whole, still averaged 6.1 cases--a figure much higher than the national average according to the State of Alaska Epidemiology Bulletin.
The University of Alaska's two year, $400,000 study was originally proposed by Republican senator Pete Kelly.
The University Herald reported that Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder prevention messages and kits with the pregnancy tests will be on display in three cities and rural areas. In other cities, the prevention messages will be on display without the kits.
Many involved with the project admit convincing a woman to take a pregnancy test during a night out may be a challenge.
Jody Allen Crowe, who started a similar organization in Minnesota, told The Anchorage Daily News, "This is not a strategy for the chronic alcoholic who is drinking regardless of whatever message they see. This is really focused on the 50 percent of unexpected pregnancies, to find out they are pregnant as early as possible."