Government action required to reduce Australia’s preventable stillbirth figures.
A recent Australian-led global study has revealed the lagging position of Australia amongst high-income countries in the instance of preventable stillbirth. There are currently six babies stillborn per day in Australia. That’s one in every 135 babies stillborn. For every one child that dies of SIDS, 35 are stillborn. And these numbers could be reduced.
To put these figures in context - imagine the excitement of learning you’re pregnant, planning your future around this monumental change to your life and all of the hopes and expectations for your new addition. Now imagine coming home from the hospital to an empty cot. This is the reality that six families face daily in our prosperous country.
The findings of the Mater Research Institute study clearly highlight key impediments to decreasing these frightening statistics and we are calling on Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull and The Hon Sussan Ley MP as Minister for Health and Aged Care to help reduce unnecessary stillbirth by:
1. Improved ante natal education and support for women in disadvantaged areas and rural and remote communities
- with greater focus on risk factors amongst disadvantaged communities; and
- improved access to midwives throughout pregnancy and labour.
2. Development of a Centre for Research Excellence for Stillbirth in collaboration with Mater Medical Research Institute enabling access to highest quality researchers and institutes in Australia for the research into causes, risk factors and implementation of prevention programs nationally.
These steps can reduce the heartbreak experienced by too many families everyday in Australia. Please help us to instigate change for the better.
To learn more about stillbirth visit stillbirthfoundationaustralia.org.au
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