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RCOG Vice President takes on RideLondon to raise funds for the Each Baby Counts programme to prevent avoidable baby deaths

News 25 July 2017

On 30 July, Edward Morris, Vice President of Clinical Quality at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), will jump on his bike to race the Prudential RideLondon and help raise funds for Each Baby Counts – a national clinical improvement programme that aims to reduce the number of babies who die or are left severely disabled as a result of incidents during labour.

Launched by the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG) in 2014, the programme is collecting and analysing information on all term stillbirths, neonatal deaths and brain injuries that occur during labour to identify where clinical improvements can be made nationally.

Mr Morris, who is a consultant gynaecologist at Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and an Each Baby Counts investigator, will lead a team of 17 College members, staff and their family and friends from Surrey to London. It will be the fourth year running that the RCOG has fielded a team for the event, and the group is hoping to raise £7,500 for Each Baby Counts.

The programme’s second report, published last month, analysed the care of 1,136 babies born in the UK in 2015 who were stillborn, died within the first seven days after birth, or suffered a severe brain injury. It found that 76% of these babies might have had a different outcome with different care, and identified key clinical actions needed to improve the quality of care and prevent future cases.

Mr Morris said he is extremely passionate about the programme which encourages families affected by these tragedies to contribute their perspective to the project.  

“Every week, the Each Baby Counts team receives reports from units around the country about families who have lost a baby or their baby is otherwise harmed during term labour. The strength of feeling among these families affected and their drive to help the Each Baby Counts team at every stage of the investigation, reinforces the need to investigate how these tragic incidents can be best avoided.”

“As is clearly evident in our latest report, this project needs as much funding as possible to ensure its success. Together with my son, sister-in-law and her husband, and my daughter’s partner, we will jump on our bikes for RideLondon to raise funds for this important programme. And if doing so motivates someone to donate to Each Baby Counts, then that is, in my view, a fantastic result.

“Our training is going well and we are confident that we will complete the distance. With such a good team again this year, we are hopeful that we can beat last year’s total! RideLondon is an amazing event – there is a lot of excitement and emotion in the air and I look forward to taking part again.”

Professor Lesley Regan, President of the RCOG, said:

“It is a profound tragedy whenever a death, disability or illness of a baby results from incidents during labour. The emotional cost to each family is incalculable and we owe it to them to properly investigate what happened and ensure the individuals and the healthcare Trusts involved take the steps needed to avoid making the same mistakes again.

“The Each Baby Counts programme couldn’t operate without the support of our fundraisers. I am incredibly proud of our members, staff and their family and friends who will take part in RideLondon this month and I wish them the very best of luck!”

To donate to Team RCOG, please visit the team’s sponsorship page.

ENDS

NOTES

For media enquiries please contact the RCOG press office on +44 (0)20 7045 6773 or email pressoffice@rcog.org.uk

For more information on Each Baby Counts, please visit the RCOG website.

For Each Baby Counts case studies, please see here.

For a photo of Edward Morris, please contact the RCOG press office.