Baby Loss

Part of the debate – in the House of Commons at 11:42 am on 13th October 2016.

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Photo of Antoinette Sandbach Antoinette Sandbach Conservative, Eddisbury 11:42 am, 13th October 2016

I know many good examples of that. I shall talk a little later about the Doncaster and Bassetlaw Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, where a midwife together with the chaplain have developed the most amazing suite of resources to support parents. They have tailor-made the information available specifically for the loss that parents face—whether a miscarriage or a stillbirth—and it was all done in their own time, unpaid and unsupported. There is that level of dedication. For every area where there is bad practice, there are fantastic and dedicated clinicians, midwives and indeed chaplains, providing support to bereaved parents.

Like George’s father, members of the all-party parliamentary group want to make a difference. We welcome the Government’s commitment to a 20% reduction in stillbirth rates by 2020 and a halving by 2030 and the additional resources that have been put into the perinatal mortality tool. We are calling for some additional steps which we believe will help to deliver those targets.

The report that we launched yesterday identifies three key aims. The first is prevention. We need a sustained public health campaign that informs parents of the known risks. We know that parents of twins are three times more likely to suffer loss. Black and ethnic minority groups face much higher rates of stillbirth and loss. Mothers over 40, mothers living in poverty, and teenage mothers all have increased risk of stillbirth or neonatal death.