Low Birth Weight

This indicator reports the percentage of total births that are low birth weight (Under 2500g). This indicator is relevant because low birth weight infants are at high risk for health problems. This indicator can also highlight the existence of health disparities.
Report Area Total Live Births Low Weight Births
(Under 2500g)
Low Weight Births, Percent Total
Franklin County, PA 12,992 987 7.6%
Pennsylvania 1,031,597 85,623 8.3%
United States 29,300,495 2,402,641 8.2%
HP 2020 Target <= 7.8
Note: This indicator is compared with the state average. Green - Better than state average, Red - Worse than state average.
Data Source: US Department of Health & Human Services, Health Indicators Warehouse. Centers of Disease Control and Prevention, National Vital Statistics System. Accessed via CDC WONDER. 2006 - 2012. Source geography: County

Babies Born with Low Birth Weight, Percent by Race / Ethnicity
Report Area Non-Hispanic White Non-Hispanic Black Non-Hispanic Asian or Pacific Islander Hispanic or Latino
Franklin County, PA 7.4% 12.2% no data 7.9%
Pennsylvania 7.1% 13.4% 8.1% 8.7%
United States 7.2% 13.6% 8.2% 7%
Babies Born with Low Birth Weight, Percent by Time Period,
2002-2008 through 2006-2012
Report Area 2002-2008 2003-2009 2004-2010 2005-2011 2006-2012
Franklin County, PA 7.4% 7.6% 7.7% 7.8% 7.6%
Pennsylvania 8.3% 8.3% 8.4% 8.3% 8.3%
United States 8.1% 8.1% 8.2% 8.2% 8.2%
Website Updated December 11 2017 Site Reviewed January 05 2018

Low Birth Weight

Data Background

The Health Indicator Warehouse is the official repository of the nation's health data, providing public access to the information resources of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), and others. When applicable, data can be obtained grouped by various information, including state, county, gender, race, ethnicity, and educational attainment.

The Division of Vital Statistics is a branch of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) responsible for maintaining birth and death records for the nation. Data are compiled for the National Vital Statistics System (NVSS) through a joint effort between the NCHS and various state and local health agencies, who are responsible for registering vital events – births, deaths, marriages, divorces, and fetal deaths. NVSS statistics are released annually in various data warehouses, including CDC WONDER , VitalStats, and the Health Indicator Warehouse .


Counts for this indicator represent the annual average births over the 7-year period 2003-2009. Original data was tabulated by the CDC based on information reported on each birth certificate. Rates represent the number of births weighing less than 2,500 grams per 100 live births based on the following formula:

Rate = [Births Weighting < 2500g] / [Total Births] * 100

Data was acquired from the Health Indicators Warehouse. For more information about this source, including data inclusion requirements and subject definitions, please visit the Health Indicator Warehouse indicator page indicator page or refer to the NVSS natality public use file documentation.


Race and Ethnicity
Race and ethnicity (Hispanic origin) are collected as two separate categories by state vital statistics registries based on methods established by the U.S. Office of Management and Budget (OMB) in 1997. All mortality statistics from the CDC WONDER databases are available by race alone (White, Black, Amer. Indian/AK Native, and Asian) ethnicity alone (Hispanic, Non- Hispanic), or by combined race and ethnicity. Data is reported separately for race alone and for ethnicity alone in order to maintain large enough sample sizes for the inclusion of small counties in the disaggregated data tables.

Courtesy: Community Commons, <www.communitycommons.org>, November 2017