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Media Release: Public Awareness Campaign On Stillbirth Is Welcome

December 2, 2019

The Stillbirth Centre of Research Excellence (Stillbirth CRE) welcomes the federal government’s announcement of a new education and awareness campaign aimed at reducing Australia’s unacceptably high rate of stillbirth.

Health Minister Greg Hunt today announced funding for the Stillbirth CRE to develop new resources for pregnant women, based on the Australian Safer Baby Bundle, to ensure every woman has access to the best information and the best possible maternity care to reduce their risk of stillbirth.

The Safer Baby Bundle, launched in October, is an initiative designed to improve the care pregnant women receive across five priority areas - smoking cessation, fetal growth restriction, decreased fetal movements, safe sleeping position, and timing of birth.

Six babies are stillborn on average every day in Australia. The specific goal of the Safer Baby Bundle is to reduce the rate of stillbirth from 28 weeks’ gestation by 20 per cent over the next three years.

Stillbirth CRE Director, Professor Vicki Flenady, said this new funding would allow the organisation to ensure pregnant women in Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Communities and in migrant and refugee communities, who are at a higher risk of stillbirth, receive important information to keep their babies safe.

The Stillbirth CRE will also receive funding from the federal government to develop an online portal for pregnant women to access information about risk factors associated with stillbirth, and to partner with Red Nose in a public awareness campaign.

“Together with our partners, we believe we can make a real difference in addressing the tragically high rates of preventable stillbirth in Australia, sparing hundreds of families a year from the anguish of losing a much-loved baby,” Professor Flenady said.

“This announcement today from the federal government means we can take the key messages of our Safer Baby Bundle initiative, and work with groups of women who we know are at a greater risk of experiencing stillbirth, to give them the best chance of keeping their babies safe.”

About the Stillbirth CRE: The Centre of Research Excellence in Stillbirth (Stillbirth CRE) is a national
collaboration aimed at reducing stillbirth in Australia. Our host institution is Mater Research Institute,
within The University of Queensland Faculty of Medicine. Our research program is funded by the National
Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) of Australia.

ENDS

Media Contact

Margaret de Silva
Centre of Research Excellence in Stillbirth
+61 7 3163 6326 | stillbirthcre@mater.uq.edu.au


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