SOURCE: March of Dimes California Chapter

March of Dimes California Chapter

May 19, 2016 18:30 ET

March of Dimes and Sutter Health Renew Multi-Year Sponsor Agreement for March for Babies

America's Favorite Walking Event Fights Birth Defects, Preterm Birth, and Infant Mortality

SAN FRANCISCO, CA--(Marketwired - May 19, 2016) - March of Dimes and Sutter Health announced today a multi-year March for Babies® sponsorship renewal through 2018. March for Babies, March of Dimes premier fundraiser, supports lifesaving research and educational programs that improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality.

Sutter Health began supporting March of Dimes 19 years ago and has been the presenting sponsor of Northern California March for Babies since 2003. To date, Sutter has raised nearly $8.7 million for the March of Dimes and the past four years has been the top healthcare March for Babies fundraising team in the nation.

In this renewal, Sutter Health continues as the signature sponsor of eleven March for Babies events across Northern and Central California in the communities of San Francisco, the East Bay area, the North Bay, Solano County, the greater Sacramento area, Silicon Valley, Pacific Grove, Stockton, Modesto, Fresno and Visalia. This year, 3 million people plan to participate in March for Babies events in 500 communities across the United States.

In addition to fundraising, the longtime partnership between Sutter Health and March of Dimes includes research and community programs, such as projects to improve protocols and procedures in hospitals across the United States. For example, Sutter Health and March of Dimes worked together to create national protocols that reduced early elective births and practices to treat women at risk of preterm labor. California has seen a 76 percent reduction of elective deliveries before 39 weeks of pregnancy since the introduction of this protocol in 2012.

"Sutter Health delivers the equivalent of about three kindergarten classes every day across our network. We know that a happy life starts with a healthy beginning so we partner with the March of Dimes to constantly look for new ways to promote safer birth experiences for mothers and their babies," said Traci Van, community benefit director with Sutter Health.

"We're proud of what we have accomplished so far with the March of Dimes. Our doctors and care teams serve as medical experts; our employees are key volunteers who personally raise funds to help moms and babies, and we partner to help educate the community. I'm excited about continuing our work together," said Van.

"Sutter Health has shown unprecedented commitment to March of Dimes," said Shelly Goodchild, March of Dimes Western Region Vice President of Field Operations. "They have raised millions of dollars for March of Dimes and have helped us make a significant impact on lowering rates of preterm birth in the United States. They are a critical partner in helping us achieve our mission to give every baby a fighting chance."

About March of Dimes

Each year nearly 4,000,000 babies are born in the United States and March of Dimes touches each one of them through research, education, support, and advocacy. March of Dimes is the leading nonprofit organization for pregnancy and baby health. With chapters nationwide, March of Dimes works to improve the health of babies by preventing birth defects, premature birth and infant mortality. Premature birth and its complications are now the leading global cause of death for children under 5 years old. Premature birth costs the United States more than $26 billion annually, according to the Institute of Medicine. For the latest resources and information, visit marchofdimes.org or for resources in Spanish, nacersano.org. Find us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter. A wealth of educational video resources is available on our YouTube channel.

About March of Dimes California

In 2015, the March of Dimes funded 26 research grants totaling $6 million to California research institutions including UC Berkeley and $4 million to the March of Dimes Prematurity Research Center at Stanford University, the first of five national trans-disciplinary research centers. In 2015, more than $300,000 in community service grant funds will be given to local California organizations in support of the March of Dimes mission. Fundraising special events held in California, such as the annual March for Babies® walks, Signature Chefs Auctions; and, the March of Dimes Celebration of Babies®: A Hollywood Luncheon; raise millions of dollars to fund research, advocacy, community programs, education, and support for moms, babies and families in our communities. Follow our California efforts on Facebook and Twitter.

About Sutter Health

Serving patients and their families in more than 100 Northern California cities and towns, Sutter Health doctors, not-for-profit hospitals and other healthcare service providers share resources and expertise to advance healthcare quality and access. The Sutter Medical Network includes many of California's top-performing, highest-quality physician organizations as measured annually by the Integrated Healthcare Association. Sutter-affiliated hospitals are regional leaders in cardiac care, women's and children's services, cancer care, orthopedics and advanced patient-safety technology. For more information about the not-for-profit Sutter Health network visit: sutterhealth.org | facebook.com/sutterhealth | youtube.com/sutterhealth | twitter.com/sutterhealth

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