ANZSA is the regional office of the International Stillbirth Alliance
ANZSA would like to thank The Mater Foundation for supporting its activities
ANZSA thanks to Mater Research for accommodating the ANZSA secretariat
Please help ANZSA by making a donation
Reducing stillbirth and improving care for affected families through high quality research, clinical practice improvement and raising public awareness.
My Baby's Movements App Presented on ABC radio's 'Babytalk'
Listen to Vicki Flenady and Glenn Gardener discuss the My Baby's Movements App and upcoming clinical trial on ABC radio's Babytalk with Penny Johnston. Interview podcast available on the Stillbirth in the News page.
Call for Board Nominations for the Australian and New Zealand Stillbirth Alliance
Message from the Chair of ANZSA, Adrian Charles:
I would like to notify you of the call for nominations for members of the ANZSA Board which is now open and will close 10th March 2014.
ANZSA is seeking nominations from individuals and full member organisations for individuals with a passion and willingness to contribute to the work of ANZSA in a meaningful way to reduce the numbers of stillborn babies and improve care for families who have a stillborn baby. Nomination of those who have played an active role in one or more of the ANZSA Committees and/or have made a substantial contribution to the objectives is highly desirable.
We wish to have a spread of expertise with clinical experience, researchers, epidemiologists, indigenous health experts, parents and others to enable the organisation to help deal and find solutions to reduce the burden of stillbirth and the related issues in Australia and New Zealand.
Kindly submit nominations by completing the nominations form (downloaded HERE) and submit to the ANZSA secretariat via firstname.lastname@example.org. Elections will be undertaken at the Annual General Meeting to be held during the PSANZ Congress on 9th April.
We look forward to your submissions,
Chair, Australian and New Zealand Stillbirth Alliance
Now available - Translated Brochures on Decreased Fetal Movements
The ANZSA brochure 'Pregnancy - Your Baby's Movements and What They Mean' has been updated and now includes translations into seven languages: Arabic, Chinese (Simplified Chinese and Traditional Chinese), Hindi, Korean, Spanish, and Vietnamese.
Visit the Resources for Parents section for more.
Stillbirth in the News - A Blood Test for Stillbirth Prevention
Researchers from Mercy Health are developing a blood test that could help to detect unborn babies at risk of stillbirth. The blood test works by measuring markers in the mother's blood that suggest oxygen deprivation in the baby.
See various articles on this story at our Media Centre.
IMPROVE Goes International - Vietnam
The IMPROVE Course (Improving Perinatal Mortality Review & Outcomes Via Education), a SCORPIO style educational workshop with 6 interactive stations based on uptake of the PSANZ Perinatal Mortality Guidelines, went International in October, being taught in Hanoi, Vietnam at the International Stillbirth Alliance Meeting. The course has been developed and continually updated with the involvement of a large group of dedicated health professionals including members of the PSANZ Perinatal Mortality Special Interest Group, Australian New Zealand Stillbirth Alliance, SIDS and Kids to name a few, and is approved by a number of Colleges including RANZCOG. The aim of teaching the course in Vietnam was to determine whether it can be modified to assist developing countries in reducing perinatal mortality, one of the WHO millennium development goals. The course was a great success and the local staff was very positive about the potential for modification for developing countries. We look forward to working further with the team in Vietnam as well as presenting IMPROVE at the International Stillbirth Alliance meeting in Amsterdam in 2014.
Quality and safety in perinatal care: The annual PSANZ Satellite Workshop of the PSANZ PMG and ANZSA
The workshop will consist of Session 1: A workshop on identification of areas for improving outcomes for mothers and babies through identification of contributory factors and potentially avoidable adverse maternal and neonatal outcomes, and Session 2: Improving the detection of fetal growth restriction.
Thursday, 10th APRIL 2014, 08:30 am to 14:30 pm
Venue: King Edward Memorial Hospital, 374 Bagot rd. Subiaco, Western Australia
See the program flyer and registration form, including speakers and topics. Submit your registration form today to secure your place.
A recent special report in the New Zealand Herald highlights the importance of studies into causes and prevention of stillbirth. The article discusses the relationship between maternal sleep position and stillbirth, noting the lack of conclusive evidence to guide recommendations. This article relates to previous research, which you can read more about below under "Stillbirth Science, Life Matters, ABC Radio National" and "New Paper on Sleeping Positions and Stillbirth".
Read the full article here.
Cure Kids has provided funding for additional research in this field.
Gold Coast Marathon
A message from Heidi Mules, Gold Coast Marathon Fundraiser
"On 7th July 2013, the day of the Gold Coast Marathon, our daughter Sophie
would have been 19 months old. Unfortunately she was stillborn at 41 weeks in
2011. Her death was the result of what is medically termed an 'accidental
placenta abruption', meaning there was no known cause, nor was there any way to
predict it was going to occur.
To commemorate her life, Ned and I will be participating in the Gold Coast marathon to fund raise for the Australian and New Zealand Still Birth Alliance (ANZSA). We hope that with further funding and research, associations such as this will be one step closer to determining the 'why' that constantly haunts us, and 'how to prevent this happening again'.
I will be almost 8 months pregnant on this date, so will graciously be participating in the 5.7km walk, and Ned will be running the 10km challenge.
Please give as generously as you are able to. It will mean a lot to Ned, myself, and other families who have been through a similar tragedy."
Sophie Mule's Memorial Fundraising Page: http://www.everydayhero.com.au/heidi_mules
If you or anyone you know would like to fund-raise on behalf of ANZSA, search for the Australia and New Zealand Stillbirth Alliance on www.Everydayhero.com.au or find our page here.
Please also read about her story here:
ISA Annual Conference 2013. Hanoi, Vietnam - 16th to 18th October
Please click HERE for more details.
Region and International Conference on Stillbirth and Perinatal Death Prevention: It will be an exciting opportunity to bring together researchers, clinicians, health care professionals, bereaved families, medical students and support organizations from many different countries to share and discuss knowledge, experiences, research and application in reality.
International Neonatal Nursing Conference 2013
5th - 8th September 2013, Belfast, Northern Ireland. Visit http://www.coinn2013.com/ for full details and program information.
2013 ANZSA and PSANZ Perinatal Mortality Group Workshop - 18th APRIL
"Beyond the Numbers - Maternal Deaths and Neo-natal Mortality" Workshop
XX FIGO World Congress of Gynecology and Obstetrics
7 - 12 October 2012 in Rome
Bringing stillbirth out of the shadows for all women having a baby in Australia
Friday, 14 September 2012
A recent editorial in the Medical Journal of Australia asks the question "Can Australia rise to the challenge of reducing the rate of avoidable stillbirths?".
New report on perinatal and maternal mortality and morbidity in Tasmania
Friday, 14 September 2012
The Council of Obstetric & Pediatric Mortality & Morbidity in Tasmania have released their 2010 report.
The report can be accessed via the Council's website.
New Paper on Sleeping Positions and Stillbirth
Prevention strategies to reduce the risk of stillbirth in late pregnancy remain limited. Many of these deaths are unexplained, despite a thorough examination, leaving parents and care providers struggling with the reasons why. The static stillbirth rate for over 20 years, when all other mortality statistics have shown an improvement, suggests we need new leads.
This interesting study by Stacey, Thompson, Mitchell, Ekeroma, Zuccollo and McCowan (2011) shows the requirement for large studies to identify new potential factors. This study is important because it generates new ideas for closer investigation in future studies. These future studies need to carefully take into account confounding factors which may account for the death that which are linked to maternal sleep position - where sleep position may not be the true reason for the death. Studies need to also address whether there is a biologically plausible mechanism that will allow us to understand how sleep position could result in stillbirth.
The authors of the paper and the editorialist (Chapell L, Smith GCS, 2011) all agree that this is a preliminary result that needs to be confirmed. Based on the information that is available, expectant mothers should not change their behaviour. This is part of the continuing research effort to reduce the risk of stillbirth. Often research goes down blind alleys. We won't know if this is a blind alley until further work is done.
There are a number of known important risk factors for stillbirth for which we must offer advice and support including overweight, obesity, smoking and maternal age over 35 which contributes to around one-third of stillbirths. Smoking cessation programs in pregnancy are effective however many women are not provided with the support they need to stop smoking - this must be addressed as a priority. While we work to create awareness of these known risk factors, it is hoped that the planned study by ANZSA will help to resolve some of the unanswered questions on maternal sleep position and stillbirth.
Stacey T, Thompson JMD, Mitchell EA, Ekeroma A, Zuccollo JM. Association between maternal sleep practices and risk of late stillbirth: a case-control study. BMJ 2011;342:d3403
Chappell L, Smith GCS. Should pregnant women sleep on their left? BMJ 2011;342:d3659
The Lancet's Stillbirth Series Report 2400 Stillbirths Each Year in ANZ
The Lancet Medical Journal published the Lancet's Stillbirth Series yesterday Thursday 14th April 2011 with the aim of highlighting this important global health issue. Simultaneous launches were held in London, New York, and Hobart in partnership with the Lancet, the International Stillbirth Alliance and its member organisations, World Health Organisation, Save the Children, UNCIEF and UNFPA. Funded by the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, this series aims to prioritize stillbirth in the context of maternal, child and newborn survival with the overall goal of bringing together epidemiology, evidence for interventions, costing estimates and policy analysis to guide decision making and promote action with measurable change by 2020. To access the six papers, two articles and eight comments please visit here.
There are over 2.6 million stillbirths worldwide every year, with 98% of the burden in high and middle income countries. In ANZ there are 2400 families who lose their precious baby to this global health problem. Four ANZ experts spoke to the media yesterday providing information on numbers, causes, interventions, disparities and the enormous impact this has on families. To listen to this media briefing, and read our ANZ Fact Sheet please visit the Australian and New Zealand Science Media Centre.
For further information about the Lancet's Stillbirth Series please visit here.