Formerly known as MOFAS: Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome

Exciting News
from MOFAS

If you're looking for the Minnesota Organization on Fetal Alcohol Syndrome (MOFAS) you have come to the right place. We have some exciting news about our organization. We have a new name! MOFAS has officially been renamed Proof Alliance. Our mission remains the same: to prevent prenatal alcohol exposure and to improve the quality of life for people living with fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD).

Why PR%F

We now have the proof that prenatal alcohol exposure is a leading cause of brain injury in children. We have the proof that FASD is 100% preventable and people living with an FASD can reach 100% of their potential.

Why Alliance?

We seek to build powerful alliances with people with an FASD, their families, legislators, experts in the field, new partners, and community members to bring awareness, research, and services to this field.

What's Next?

Proof Alliance is rebranding, expanding, and we're moving! We have a new logo, website, and prevention campaign to help change the norms around drinking during pregnancy. And in May 2019 we will be moving to a stand-alone building. Proof Alliance commits to the people of Minnesota and we will continue to develop transformative programs to help Minnesotans impacted by FASD.

Preventing Pregnancy

Preventing Unintended Pregnancy

On average, couples who are sexually active but do not use birth control have an 85% chance of becoming pregnant1; using contraception (birth control) correctly and consistently can significantly reduce the risk of having an unintended pregnancy.

If you are sexually active, there is a variety of safe and effective methods of contraception that can be used to prevent pregnancy.2 You can learn more about different contraceptive methods on the CDC web site or Bedsider. 3, 4 Talk with your health care provider about which option is best for you.

Unintended Pregnancy

In the United States, nearly half (45%) of all pregnancies are unintended.5 Amongst adolescents, this rate is even higher with 75% of pregnancies to people under the age of 20 being unintended.6 An unintended pregnancy is a pregnancy that is mistimed, unplanned, or unwanted at the time of conception.7

Effects of Unintended Pregnancy

Unintended pregnancy can have negative effects on the pregnant person and their child. Unintended pregnancies are associated with delayed prenatal care, decreased number of prenatal care visits, and increased risk of maternal depression and anxiety.8 Not receiving proper prenatal care can put both the pregnant person and their child at risk.

Unintended pregnancy is also costly. Unintended pregnancies cost taxpayers an estimated $21 billion in 2010.2 The estimated cost to Minnesota in 2010 was $128.7 million.9 These expenditures include costs for prenatal care, labor and deliver, post-partum care, and 1 year of infant care.

Link to FASD

Unintended pregnancy can lead to prenatal alcohol exposure. 53.6% of women in their childbearing years report alcohol use.10 While most people quit drinking alcohol after they find out they are pregnant, nearly half of pregnancies are unplanned and many people do not find out they are pregnant until at least 4-6 weeks after conception. This means that people may be exposing their developing embryo to alcohol before they find out they are pregnant. Alcohol use during pregnancy (including during the early stages of the first trimester) can cause irreversible birth defects and brain injury.11-15

Children with prenatal alcohol exposure are at risk of having an FASD. FASD, or fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, is a range of birth defects that can include physical, mental, behavioral, and/or learning disabilities with lifelong implications.16 By preventing unintended pregnancy, we can also prevent prenatal alcohol exposure and FASD.

*Gender-specific language

Proof Alliance acknowledges that not every person who can become pregnant identifies as a woman. Although we try to use gender-neutral language as often as possible, much of the current research available currently refers only to “women” when discussing the ability to become pregnant. When citing this research, we refer to the language used in the study. In these cases, “woman” refers to someone who was assigned female at birth.

Sources:

  1. Guttmacher Institute. Contraceptive Use in the United States. https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/contraceptive-use-united-states
  2. Office of Women’s Health, U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. Birth Control Methods. https://www.womenshealth.gov/a-z-topics/birth-control-methods
  3. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Contraception. https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/contraception/index.htm
  4. Bedsider. Birth Control Methods. https://www.bedsider.org/methods
  5. Finer LB, Zolna MR. Declines in Unintended Pregnancy in the United States, 2008-2011. New England Journal of Medicine. 2016;374: 843-852.
  6. Guttmacher Institute. Unintended Pregnancy in the United States. https://www.guttmacher.org/fact-sheet/unintended-pregnancy-united-states
  7. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Unintended Pregnancy Prevention.  https://www.cdc.gov/reproductivehealth/unintendedpregnancy/index.htm
  8. Gipson JD, Koenig MA, Hindin MJ. The Effects of Unintended Pregnancy on Infant, Child, and Parental Health: A Review of the Literature. Studies in Family Planning. 2008;39(1): 18-38.
  9. Guttmacher Institute. State Facts About Unintended Pregnancy: Minnesota. https://www.guttmacher.org/sites/default/files/factsheet/mn_17.pdf
  10. Tan CH, Denny CH, Cheal NE, Sniezek JE, Kanny D. Alcohol Use and Binge Drinking Among Women of Childbearing Age: United States, 2011-2013. Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report (MMWR). 2015;64(37): 1042-1046.
  11. Feldman HS, et al. Prenatal Alcohol Exposure Patterns and Alcohol-Related Birth Defects and Growth Deficiencies: A Prospective Study. Alcohol Clin Exp Res. 2012;36(4):670-676.
  12. Treit S, Zhou D, Chudley AE, et al. Relationships between Head Circumference, Brain Volume and Cognition in Children with Prenatal Alcohol Exposure. PLoS ONE. 2016;11(2):1-15.
  13. Sawada Feldman H, Lyons Jones K, Lindsay S, et al. Prenatal Alcohol Exposure Patterns and Alcohol-Related Birth Defects and Growth Deficiencies: A Prospective Study. Alcoholism: Clinical & Experimental Research. 2012;36(4):670-676.
  14. Muralidharan P, Sarmah S, Feng C. Zhou, Marrs JA. Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Associated Neural Defects: Complex Mechanisms and Potential Therapeutic Targets. Brain Sciences (2076-3425). 2013;3(2):964-991.
  15. Lewis SM, Vydrová RR, Leuthold AC, Georgopoulos AP. Cortical miscommunication after prenatal exposure to alcohol. Experimental Brain Research. 2016;234(11):3347-3353.
  16. Noor S, Milligan ED. Lifelong Impacts of Moderate Prenatal Alcohol Exposure on Neuroimmune Function. Frontiers in Immunology. 2018.

Last updated: March 2019


Share this page:

Support &
Resources

Women &
Pregnancy

Training &
Webinars