BISMARCK — The North Dakota Health Department is getting on board with a stillbirth prevention campaign.

Count the Kicks is a free app that expectant moms can use to monitor their baby’s movements, record the history and set daily reminders, the health department said in a news release.

According to North Dakota vital statistics, an average of 62 babies are stillborn each year in the state.

If North Dakota experiences the same reduction in its stillbirth rate as Iowa, where Count the Kicks began, 18 babies could potentially be saved in one year, the health department said.

“I encourage all North Dakota health providers to order Count the Kicks educational materials today and let them spark the kick-counting conversation with patients,” said Sarah Massey, North Dakota Department of Health, Infant & Child Death Services Director.

Count the Kicks teaches the method of tracking fetal movement in the third trimester of pregnancy.

Studies show expectant moms should track their baby’s movements once a day in the third trimester and learn how long it normally takes their baby to reach 10 movements.

Moms will start to notice a pattern and the “normal” amount of time it takes their baby to get to that mark.

If the "normal" interval changes during the third trimester, it could be a sign of potential problems and an indication to call their health care provider, the health department said.

Thanks to the North Dakota Department of Health, providers can order free Count the Kicks educational materials at www.countthekicks.org.

Moms everywhere can download the free Count the Kicks app, available in the Google Play and iTunes online stores, in 10 languages.

For questions, contact the Division of Injury and Violence Prevention at 701-328-4536.

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