The Alaska Pregnancy Risk Assessment Monitoring System (PRAMS) Project is an on-going survey of mothers of newborns initiated by the State of Alaska Division of Public Health, Section of Maternal, Child and Family Health in 1990. PRAMS was developed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Division of Reproductive Health and is part of CDC's initiative to reduce infant mortality and low birth weight. PRAMS collects state-specific, population-based data on maternal attitudes and experiences before, during, and after pregnancy by means of a mailed survey with phone follow-up for mail non-respondents. PRAMS was designed to supplement Vital Records data by providing state-specific data on maternal behaviors and experiences to be used for planning and assessing perinatal health programs. The global goal of PRAMS is to reduce infant morbidity and mortality by influencing maternal behaviors during and immediately after pregnancy. Four specific objectives to achieve PRAMS'goal are: To collect population-based data of high scientific quality.
PRAMS is relevant to public health through its standardized collection of population-based data on maternal and infant health issues specific to Alaska. PRAMS provides self-reported maternal and infant health behavioral data that adds to outcome information gleaned from birth or hospital records that is helpful to program planning and evaluation. The standardized PRAMS protocol and methodology across states adds to the nationwide picture of maternal and child health status.