As a result of your campaigning, there will now be a confidential enquiry into Asian baby deaths in the UK

During Baby Loss Awareness Week in October 2021, we called on the Government to fund an additional enquiry into Asian baby deaths in the UK.    

Following huge support from Sands campaigners and many MPs, we are delighted that this enquiry, led by MBRRACE-UK, is going ahead.

Crucially, it is running alongside the enquiry into Black baby deaths that is already under way and will report at the same time in 2023, meaning that real headway can be made in ensuring that all lessons are learnt, and preventable deaths avoided. 

Every day in the UK around 13 babies die before, during or soon after birth. Sands estimates that had stillbirth and neonatal death rates for Black and Asian babies been the same as for White babies, 432 fewer babies would have died in 2019 in England and Wales.    

How this will help save lives

Previous confidential enquiries have been crucial in driving down maternal and perinatal death rates in some groups. These in-depth reviews of all case notes conclude within a set time period and with solid recommendations.

"It’s really important that this confidential enquiry is underway. It will help us learn about which changes to care are needed to help save babies lives. It will be vital that the Government and NHS act on recommendations from this enquiry and the enquiry into Black and Black British baby deaths when they are both published in 2023, if inequalities in baby deaths are to be reduced."

- Clea Harmer, Chief Executive at Sands

Awareness of the changes that are needed to make care safer have been transformed by similar confidential enquiries, for example into term stillbirths and deaths in labour, and have contributed significantly to reducing deaths in those groups.    

 “As a bereaved parent having lost my baby boy Shivai, I am passionate about doing everything possible to ensure this devastating loss does not happen to another parent. The fact that this vital enquiry is at long last going ahead means a lot to all bereaved Asian parents in the UK, many of whom haven't had the answers they need for far too long as to why their babies died.

The findings from this report, together with the Black confidential enquiry, will help the entire baby loss community to understand better as to why our babies died, and what steps we can recommend to stop this from continuing to happen. Thank you to everyone who has played a part in helping to get this confidential enquiry to happen.” 

- Shetal Ksavi Joshi, Sands ambassador. 

Sands will be staying in touch with both confidential enquiry teams. We'll be making sure that whatever recommendations are made when they report back on 2023 result in further action to save babies' lives.

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