January 27, 2021

Preventing Birth Defects with Dr. Rahul Gupta

Birth defects, defined by the March of Dimes, are structural changes that affect one or more parts of the body (e.g. heart, brain, foot). While some birth defects are completely unavoidable and unpreventable, certain behaviors and social and environmental factors can impact the risk for birth defects. 

In this episode of Yoga|Birth|Babies, Chief Medical and Health Officer at March of Dimes and Senior Vice President, Rahul Gupta, MD, MPH, MBA, FACP, offers insight on birth defects and shares which personal choices can increase your chances of having a healthy, full-term pregnancy and baby.

In this episode you will learn: 

  • About Dr. Rahul Gupta and how he got involved in the March of Dimes. 
  • The mission of the March of Dimes.
  • What we know about how COVID effects pregnant people.
  • The inequities in which COVID and maternal mortality and mobility rates are affecting people of color. 
  • Actions people can take to be healthy before and during pregnancy. 
  • The definition of birth defect. 
  • How prevalent are birth defects?  
  • How often birth defects are detected and how, ultra sounds, amniocentesis etc. 
  • The course of action for different birth defects. 
  • Some birth defects are preventable and some aren’t. What are some factors that could lead to birth defects?
  • Behaviors pregnant people can adopt to help increase their chances of having a healthy, full term baby. 
  • A tip/piece of advice for new or expectant parents.
  • Where people can find Dr. Gupta’s work and the work of the March of Dimes.

Join the conversation about National Birth Defects Prevention Month by following hashtag #Best4YouBest4Baby on social media and by visitingMarch of Dimes at marchofdimes.org/YogaBirthBabies and CDC at cdc.gov/birthdefects.

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  • Join the conversation about National Birth Defects Prevention Month by following hashtag #Best4YouBest4Baby on social media and by visitingMarch of Dimes at marchofdimes.org/YogaBirthBabiesand CDC at cdc.gov/birthdefects

About Rahul Gupta, MD, MPH, MBA, FACP:

Rahul Gupta, MD, MPH, MBA, FACP, is the Senior Vice President and Chief Medical and Health Officer at March of Dimes, the nation’s leader in mom and baby health.  In this role, Dr. Gupta provides strategic oversight for March of Dimes medical and public health efforts to improve the health of all moms and babies. Additionally, he serves as the interim Chief Science Officer and provides the strategic direction and oversight of March of Dimes research portfolio. 

Prior to joining March of Dimes, Dr. Gupta served as West Virginia’s Health Commissioner. As the Chief Health Officer, he oversaw the state’s public health system including over 130 program lines. He also led the state’s opioid crisis response efforts and launched a number of pioneering public health initiatives that have been recognized nationally and globally.

Dr. Gupta, a specialist in internal medicine and preventive medicine, is currently a clinical Professor in the Department of Medicine at Georgetown University School of Medicine as well as adjunct professor in the Department of Health Policy, Management and Leadership in the School of Public Health at West Virginia University and visiting faculty at Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health. Previously, he served as an academic faculty in Tennessee and Alabama.

Dr. Gupta was born in India and grew up in Maryland and the suburbs of Washington, DC. He completed medical school at University of Delhi, and subsequently did his internship and residency at St. Joseph Hospital, Northwestern University in Chicago, IL. He earned a master’s degree in public health from the University of Alabama-Birmingham and a global master’s of business administration degree from the London School of Business and Finance. 

If you love what you’ve been listening to, please leave a rating and review! Yoga| Birth|Babies

To connect with Deb and the PYC Community: 

Instagram & Facebook: @prenatalyogacenter

Youtube: Prenatal Yoga Center



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