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RCOG response to Health Secretary announcement of ambition to cut stillbirths and neonatal deaths by half by 2030

News 13 November 2015

The Health Secretary, Jeremy Hunt, has announced a new programme designed to reduce the rate of stillbirths, neonatal and maternal deaths in England by 50% by 2030.

Dr David Richmond, President of the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), said:

“We support this initiative and our important role in it as leaders of the profession. Good progress has been made but the fact is many of these incidents could be avoided with improvements to the care women and their babies receive.

“The RCOG will continue to work closely with our clinical colleagues and the Royal College of Midwives to provide better multi-disciplinary training packages and promote more effective team working, so that this aspect of care can be improved. The challenges of reducing health problems and deaths in mothers and babies due to contributory factors such as smoking, obesity and alcohol also require similar commitment.

“This campaign fits closely with our Each Baby Counts programme, which aims to cut the number of babies who die or are left severely disabled as a result of incidents occurring during term labour. 100% of Trusts have signed up to the programme in the first year, which will ensure that all incidents can be investigated at a national as well as local level. Only by scrutinising this data on an annual basis will we improve outcomes.”