The Louisiana Birth Defects Monitoring Network (LBDMN) within the Louisiana Department of Health (LDH), Office of Public Health (OPH), Bureau of Family Health (BFH) is responsible for surveillance of birth defects in Louisiana children. Mandated in 2004, it was the intent of the legislature to “establish a system to collect, analyze, and disseminate data regarding birth defects in the state and to provide information to families of children born with birth defects regarding services available in their community and the development of appropriate prevention programs” (Louisiana Revised Statute (R.S.) 40:31.43 and Louisiana Administrative Code LAC Title 48, Part V, Subpart 55, Chapters 161 & 163 et al).

The following report summarizes the key findings related to the prevalence of birth defects and the performance of this essential surveillance system.