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Media Release: Safer Baby Bundle Launches in WA

November 3, 2020

Safer Baby Bundle to Help Reduce the Rate of Stillbirth in Western Australia

Western Australia has joined a new initiative to tackle the nation’s stillbirth rate.

The Safer Baby Bundle is a range of resources and interventions designed to reduce Australia’s incidence of late-gestation stillbirth (after 28 weeks).

Across Australia, an average of six infants are stillborn every day, a rate that has changed little in more than two decades.

Research suggests that almost a third of these deaths are preventable

Developed by the National Health and Medical Research Council Centre of Research Excellence in Stillbirth (Stillbirth CRE), the Safer Baby Bundle gives maternity health providers evidence-based training and support to keep more women and their babies safe through pregnancy.

The Stillbirth CRE initiative covers five elements to reduce the rate of stillbirth from 28
weeks:

  1. Supporting women to stop smoking in pregnancy.
  2. Improving detection and management of fetal growth restriction.
  3. Raising awareness and improving care for women with decreased fetal movements.
  4. Improving awareness of sleeping on either side from 28 weeks; and
  5. Improving shared decision-making around timing of birth for women with risk factors
    for stillbirth.

A key aim of the bundle is to encourage healthcare providers to talk to patients about their
risk of stillbirth and how their care throughout pregnancy can be personalised according to
their risk profile.

The bundle includes care pathways, best practice recommendations, evaluation strategies,
and both face-to-face and eLearning educational modules.

Stillbirth CRE Director Professor Vicki Flenady said this life-saving intervention was necessary to support clinicians reduce preventable stillbirths.

“The Safer Baby Bundle initiative has been designed so clinicians, regardless of where they work, can access our eLearning modules and have the latest, best-practice evidence at hand,” Professor Flenady said.

Stillbirth CRE co-director Professor David Ellwood said the bundle promoted respectful care and shared decision making, with the potential to improve women’s and families’ experience of maternity care. “We believe the bundle has the potential to reduce not only stillbirth rates but also to improve other outcomes for mothers and babies in Australia,” Professor Ellwood said.

Overseas, similar bundles of care have been shown to be very successful in reducing the rate
of stillbirth.

The Safer Baby Bundle aims to reduce Australia’s stillbirth rate after 28 weeks by at least 20 per cent by 2023.

ENDS

Media Contact

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

For more information on the Safer Baby Bundle, visit http://learn.stillbirthcre.org.au


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