Data, statistics, public policy research and other information related to pregnancy and substance use.
(Prosecution for Drug Use) "The Constitution does not provide an individual with the right to use drugs. Nevertheless, the Court in Robinson held that the Constitution prohibits the State from punishing an individual simply due to his status as a drug user.198 The State is only constitutionally permitted to punish individuals for an act, not their status.
(Cost Estimates for Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome) "Between 2000 and 2009, the incidence of NAS [Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome] among newborns increased from 1.20 (95% CI, 1.04-1.37) to 3.39 (95% CI, 3.12-3.67) per 1000 hospital births per year (P for trend < .001). Antepartum maternal opiate use also increased from 1.19 (95% CI, 1.01-1.35) to 5.63 (95% CI, 4.40-6.71) per 1000 hospital births per year (P for trend < .001).
(Estimated Prevalence of Current Alcohol Use Among Pregnant Women in the US) "Among pregnant women aged 15 to 44 in 2012-2013, an annual average of 9.4 percent reported current alcohol use, 2.3 percent reported binge drinking, and 0.4 percent reported heavy drinking. These rates were lower than the rates for nonpregnant women in the same age group (55.4, 24.6, and 5.3 percent, respectively). Current alcohol use in 2012-2013 was lower among pregnant women aged 15 to 44 during the second and third trimesters than during the first trimester (5.0 and 4.4 percent vs.
(Prosecution and Principle of Equality) "In addition to the principles laid out in Robinson,* punishing women for their behavior during pregnancy is precluded by the Cruel and Unusual Punishment Clause’s principle of equality.
(Statutes Used to Prosecute Pregnant Women) "Since there were not, and still are not, any statutes on the books specifically criminalizing drug use during pregnancy, women have been prosecuted under statutes that deal with child abuse, assault, murder, or drug dealing . One of the newest attempts in prosecuting women is using statutes related to the delivery of drugs to a minor.
(Prosecuting Men for Prenatal Substance Abuse) "Criminal prosecutions for prenatal substance abuse create a de facto gender classification in that only mothers are prosecuted for their children's injuries.86 Initially it may appear that men and women are not similarly situated for the purposes of childbearing, because women and not men carry children to term and it is women's lifestyle choices that most obviously impact the health of the fetus.87 In fact, at least one study indicates that drug use by men can likewise impact fetal health.88
(Neonatal Opiate Withdrawal) "Any regular, daily antenatal opioid exposure (e.g., morphine, codeine, oxycodone, methadone, or buprenorphine) can produce neonatal withdrawal, also known as neonatal abstinence syndrome [NAS]. Estimates show that up to 96% of infants display withdrawal symptoms, and a smaller proportion require pharmacotherapy.4,68,116,117,120,121 NAS is characterized by respiratory, gastrointestinal, central nervous system, and autonomic symptoms (Table 6).
(Methadone Treatment) "There are numerous benefits of methadone use during pregnancy, including improved prenatal care,12,107–109 longer gestation,50,110 higher birth weight,111,112 and increased rates of infants discharged home in the care of their mothers.4,12,18,49,101,108,113–118 Although infants of methadone-treated women tend to be smaller (lower birth weight, length, and head circumference) than drug-free controls, studies have shown a catch-up of growth by 12 months of age.118,119"