About the Louisiana Birth Defects Monitoring Network

The Louisiana Birth Defects Monitoring Network (LBDMN) is one of four programs in the Bureau of Family Health serving Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs (CYSHCN). Under the Louisiana Department of Health's Office of Public Health, LBDMN staff conduct active Public Health surveillance of children born with congenital medical conditions. By monitoring the health status of newborns, LBDMN provides population-based data that helps focus policies, educate the public, support our community partners' efforts to link families to services, and prevent new occurrences. We evaluate concerns about unexpected groups of birth defects as well as the effectiveness of preventive interventions. These activities ultimately protect the public's health beginning early in life.

LBDMN is primarily concerned with the active surveillance of children born in Louisiana.  We collect data to answer questions about the roughly 1,500 children born with congenital medical conditions annually--  Which diagnoses do they have?  Where are they located?  Born to which mothers?  We report our data to our sister agencies in LDH, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and to the National Birth Defects Prevention Network. LBDMN also collaborates with community partners to educate the public on ways to prevent birth defects and to reach out to those families who already have a child born with a congenital disability. Our overall mission is:

  • Surveillance --  To collect and analyze our birth defects data on all children under the age of three years old for the frequency and distribution of birth defects in the state.
  • Referrals --  To provide information to affected families on locally available medical, social and educational services.
  • Prevention --  To use the results of data analysis to plan and target birth defects education and prevention efforts.
  • Collaboration --  To be active partners in birth defects education and prevention efforts throughout the state.

By evaluating patient discharge information from all birthing hospitals in Louisiana, we generate private and confidential lists of children whose medical records are each reviewed by Data Collection Specialists across the state. The medical record data is de-identified and statistically analyzed for patterns and trends over time. Annual reports are prepared for the Louisiana legislature, and the National Birth Defects Prevention Network.

Learn more about birth defects. Visit www.cdc.gov/birthdefects.



LBDMN is funded by the Title V Maternal and Child (MCH) Block Grant federal fund. The MCH Block Grant is a grant from the U.S. government that supports programs for women, children, and teens, as well as for children and youth with special health care needs and their families. The Louisiana Department of Health, Office of Public Health’s Bureau of Family Health (BFH) oversees Louisiana’s MCH Block Grant.

If you would like to learn more about the MCH Block Grant or access informative fact sheets for families, clients, and providers, please visit LDH's Block Grant Application for Public Comments and Review


Contact Us

To learn more about our staff and view our contact information, please visit our LBDMN Central Office Staff page.