The 2016 National Birth Defects Prevention Month theme is, "Making Healthy Choices to Prevent Birth Defects - Make a PACT for Prevention."

Healthcare providers can encourage parents-to-be to make a PACT for birth defects prevention by taking the following steps:

P --Planning ahead for pregnancy;

A --Avoiding harmful substances like chemicals in the home or workplace;

C --Choosing a healthy lifestyle, including eating a healthy diet; and

T --Talking with their healthcare provider before and during pregnancy, particularly about medication use.

More information about medication use in pregnancy is available at CDC's Treating for Two initiative website; www.cdc.gov/pregnancy/meds/treatingfortwo/.

CDC encourages healthcare providers to become active participants in National Birth Defects Prevention Month by joining the nationwide effort to raise awareness of birth defects, their causes, and their impact.