Sands is joining forces with The Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists to host a major stillbirth seminar in London on, 5th December, 2011.

The seminar brings together leading national and international experts to address the clinical issues surrounding stillbirth and its prevention. The seminar, which will be held at the Royal College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RCOG), will also look at the support and information currently provided for bereaved parents who endure the tragedy of losing their baby.

The seminar will appeal to all medical professionals involved in maternity issues. This includes, all consultants and trainees in obstetrics and gynaecology; clinical managers; midwives; perinatal pathologists; specialist trainees; student midwives and staff grades, staff doctors; trust doctors and associate specialists.

Speakers will include leading experts and researchers in the field of stillbirth prevention as well as bereaved parents, who will explore the parents’ experience of the death of their baby, and their subsequent bereavement care needs.

Topics covered during the day will include decreased fetal movements, the role of the midwife, the use of ultrasound to detect stillbirth and bereavement care.

Dr Tony Falconer, President of the RCOG who will be attending the seminar, said: This important event brings together a wide range of experts including midwives, obstetricians and parents to discuss the clinical issues surrounding stillbirth, which causes such distress to parents and families.

There are many factors associated with stillbirth such as increasing maternal age, obesity, ethnicity, congenital anomalies and placental conditions, however, a significant number are unexplained.  Therefore more research is needed to raise awareness of the possible reasons enabling us to reduce the number of cases.  

The stillbirth rate has remained generally constant since 2000 and in addition to any physical effects, stillbirth can have profound emotional, psychiatric and social effects on parents, their relatives and friends.

The day will also include the opening of an exhibition of artwork by bereaved mum, Cordelia Spalding, of babies’ handprints, which will remain at the RCOG after the seminar.

If you would like to book a place either for yourself, or if you are a member of a local Sands group and would like to sponsor a midwife from your local maternity unit to attend, or simply want to find out more about the seminar, please visit www.rcog.org.uk/events/stillbirth. Standard delegate rate for online bookings is £80, and the rate for midwives is £40.