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Friday, 22 October 2021
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Leading baby loss charities join forces to save lives

LEADING UK charities Sands and Tommy’s are forming a joint policy unit, working in partnership to halve the number of UK baby deaths by giving decision-makers the latest information and most robust evidence to inform maternity policy.

Every year in the UK, more than 5,000 babies are stillborn or die within the first 4 weeks of life, while 1 in 5 pregnancies ends in miscarriage, and around 60,000 babies are born prematurely.

The two charities are collaborating to gather up-to-date evidence and identify the key changes needed to save babies lives, reduce inequalities and improve outcomes.

Clea Harmer, Chief Executive at Sands (Stillbirth and neonatal death charity), said:

“We know that 8 out of 10 term, intrapartum stillbirths could be preventable with better care. Miscarriage is not ‘just one of those things’, miscarriages need to be recorded, with standardised access to care across the UK and personal care pathways for women at highest risk. Successful tests and treatments to predict and prevent preterm birth have been developed, but at the moment, access to these depends on where you live.”

Jane Brewin, Chief Executive at Tommy’s, said:

“Everyone should be entitled to the best care for themselves and their baby, no matter who they are or where they live. By working together, our new policy unit can help bring about the changes needed to make sure that families no longer face pregnancy risks because of their postcode, ethnicity or income. With our collective expertise, we’ll join up national and local voices behind a common agenda: to reduce health inequalities for families throughout the pregnancy journey, from pre-conception to infancy.”

Tommy’s and Sands are members of the VCSE Health and Wellbeing Alliance, leading a Maternity Consortium that includes National Maternity Voices (NMV), the Pregnancy and Baby Charities Network (PBCN) and a number of community organisations.

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