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HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 3080        FILED ON: 1/18/2013

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 1952


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



Gloria L. Fox


To the Honorable Senate and House of Representatives of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts in General
              Court assembled:

              The undersigned legislators and/or citizens respectfully petition for the adoption of the accompanying bill:

An Act to establish folic acid awareness programs for young girls and women .






Gloria L. Fox

7th Suffolk

Cheryl A. Coakley-Rivera

10th Hampden

Kay Khan

11th Middlesex

Linda Dorcena Forry

12th Suffolk

Martin J. Walsh

13th Suffolk

Denise Andrews

2nd Franklin

Aaron Vega

5th Hampden

Mary S. Keefe

15th Worcester

Marcos A. Devers

16th Essex

Tricia Farley-Bouvier

3rd Berkshire

Christine E. Canavan

10th Plymouth

Kate Hogan

3rd Middlesex

HOUSE DOCKET, NO. 3080        FILED ON: 1/18/2013

HOUSE  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  .  No. 1952

By Ms. Fox of Boston, a petition (accompanied by bill, House, No. 1952) of Gloria L. Fox and others relative to establishing the folic acid awareness programs for young girls and women.  Public Health. 


SEE HOUSE, NO. 1479 OF 2011-2012.]


The Commonwealth of Massachusetts



In the Year Two Thousand Thirteen



An Act to establish folic acid awareness programs for young girls and women .


              Be it enacted by the Senate and House of Representatives in General Court assembled, and by the authority of the same, as follows:

              This legislation aims to build upon the work of health institutions such as Children’s Hospital Boston Center for Young Women’s Health, Fenway Health Center, and Whittier Health Center, all other centers, programs and healthcare facilities. Folic acid is a key element of healthy diets in young girls and women; its daily consumption has been linked to reducing the incidence of neural tube defects, cleft palates, congenital heart defects, prematurity, and low birth weight in newborns. It is imperative that the Commonwealth recognize the importance of folic acid in girls’ and women’s diets, and assist health institutions in continuing their health and wellness advocacy programs around its consumption. This is especially true given the high incidence of premature births and low birth weight among women of color.

              Taking folic acid daily is recommended for all people, especially for women in their childbearing years. Folic Acid when taken before pregnancy and in the early weeks of pregnancy can reduce the risk of neural tube defects by 70%. For all women and men: In the body, folic acid:

                            May prevent heart disease and certain types of cancers

                            May protect against depression and decline in cognitive functioning

                            Is necessary for cell division and replication

                            Helps in the formation of mature red blood cells and prevents a type of anemia called megaloblastic anemia

                            Helps maintain heart health by lowering levels of homocysteine, a compound known to increase risk of cardiovascular complications

              For moms-to-be: In the body, folic acid:

                            Helps prevent birth defects

                            Helps reduce risk of high blood pressure in pregnancy

                            Helps prevent low birth weight

                            Helps reduce risk of miscarriage

              In recognizing the importance of folic acid in the diets of women and girls, research suggest that consumption of multivitamins containing folic acid may also help prevent many of the health issues listed. We hope that by creating an awareness program in all of our areas that cover young women and women health, wellness and education of such.

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