Public Health Grand Rounds on Preventing Birth Defects of the Brain and Spine


17 October 2017


Location: Webcast, 1 p.m., Eastern Time

Region: Americas


This webcast, organized by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), will include four speakers discussing global prevention of birth defects of the brain and spine known as neural tube defects or NTDs.

  • Krista Crider with the CDC's National Center on Birth Defects and Developmental Disabilities, will provide an overview of what these birth defects are, the global burden, and approaches for increasing folic acid intake to prevent NTDs.
  • Scott Montgomery, Director of the Food Fortification Initiative, will discuss the success and opportunities for fortifying industrially milled wheat flour, maize flour, and rice to prevent NTDs.
  • Neena Raina, Regional Advisor, Child and Adolescent Health at World Health Organization Southeast Asia Regional Office (WHO-SEARO), will describe birth defect surveillance in Southeast Asia. In 2014, WHO-SEARO created an online system of newborn-birth defects (SEAR-NBBD) database. The system was designed to support data management for newborn health, birth defects and stillbirths.
  • Erin Smith, Deputy Country Director for Helen Keller International (HKI) in Tanzania, will present options for fortifying flour in small- and medium-size mills.
Public Health Grand Rounds

Contact Information

Scott Montgomery