Dominican Republic ranks third in the Americas in consumption of alcoholic beverages by pregnant women, according to statistics from the Pan American Health Organization (PAHO / WHO) cited today in a forum in Santo Domingo.
The international meeting "Fetal Alcohol Spectrum" is held in Santo Domingo with the purpose of raising awareness in the population about the harm caused by alcohol in the different stages of pregnancy.
Experts from the United States and Canada participate in the event, in coordination with international organizations.
Pediatricians, neonatologists, perionatologists, neurologists, psychiatrists, psychologists and gynecologists-obstetricians will participate this Thursday and Friday in workshops on the management of the fetal alcohol spectrum syndrome, so that they can guide pregnant women about the damage caused to the fetus by the consumption of alcohol.
The implementation of the initiative will begin in the maternal and child hospital San Lorenzo de Los Mina, in the Santo Domingo Este municipality, and, later, it will be replicated in the other maternity hospitals in the country.
The representative of PAHO / WHO Alma Morales expressed concern about the high consumption of alcohol in pregnant women and described as important the conduct of this workshop in coordination with the Ministry of Health.
The Dominican Minister of Health, Rafael Sánchez Cárdenas, stressed the need to strengthen the campaign and regulatory measures to prevent pregnant women from consuming alcohol and especially in the first trimester which is the most important of their pregnancy.
Meanwhile, the senior advisor on alcohol and substance abuse at the PAHO / WHO Maristela Monteiro explained that a pregnant woman who drinks alcohol can have neurological effects, intoxication, attention deficit among other physical and neurocognitive characteristics.
The fetal alcohol syndrome has its origin in the intake of alcoholic beverages by pregnant women.
The repercussions on the fetus are low birth weight, damage to one or several of its organs, possible delays in learning and cognitive ability, among others.