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Preterm Birth: Every Week Counts

Preterm Birth: Every Week Counts

Webinar Description

This free webinar will be facilitated by ACM Board Member Allison Cummins and presented by Dr Barbara Vernon and Professor Jonathan Morris.

More than 26,000 babies (8.7%) are born too early in Australia each year, and this rate has been rising. In addition, a rising number of babies are being born in the early term period (37:0 to 38:6) weeks gestation, with a significant rise in rates of induction of labour and planned caesarean sections causing births to occur earlier than 39 weeks.

Being born too early, known medically as preterm birth, is the single greatest cause of death in young children and one of the major causes of lifelong disability, including cerebral palsy, blindness, deafness and behavioural and learning problems at school age.

An exciting new national collaboration of organisations is working together over the next 2 years to change this. Called “Every Week Counts: the National Preterm Birth Prevention Collaborative”, is supporting 50 maternity hospitals across Australia to work together to safely reduce rates of preterm and early term birth.

Join us for this webinar to learn about:

  • Recent trends in maternity care and outcomes from Women’s Healthcare Australasia’s Clinical Benchmarking Program
  • Why it is important for babies to be born at or beyond 39 weeks gestation wherever it is safe for pregnancy to continue
  • How Women’s Healthcare Australasia and its partner organisations will be helping hospitals to safely lower their rates of early birth over the next 2 years and beyond


Dr Barbara Vernon

Dr Barb Vernon (BA Hons, PhD) is the CEO of Women’s Healthcare Australasia, a peak not-for-profit body of 150+ maternity services. Through WHA, hospitals share data and expertise to improve care and outcomes for women and newborns. Under her leadership over the past 10 years, WHA has grown to include 86% of public births in Australia and has partnered with both government and research organisations to facilitate improvements in clinical care and outcomes for women and newborns, including on reducing severe perineal tears. She is passionate about closing the gap between evidence and practice in the maternity care sector, and sees capacity building in improvement science among maternity service leaders and clinicians as a key strategy to accelerating and sustaining improvement efforts.

Professor Jonathan Morris

Professor Jonathan Morris is a graduate of the University of Edinburgh and completed his Obstetric and Maternal Fetal Medicine sub specialty training in Sydney. He completed his PhD in Oxford and returned to Sydney in 1998 to the Royal North Shore Hospital. He leads a perinatal research team that extends from basic science to population health. His major research interests are the prediction, prevention and management of pregnancy complications.

Qualify for CPD Hours

1 CPD hour

Thursday, 06 October 2022
2:00 pm to 3:00 pm

1.00 CPD Hours