Sands is here to support all bereaved families in Scotland, following the publication of a Healthcare Improvement Scotland report into the national increase in neonatal deaths that occurred in 2021 and 2022.

The review was commissioned by the Minister for Public Health, Women’s Health and Sport, after data published in the COVID-19 Wider Impacts Dashboard showed an increase in neonatal mortality in Scotland in September 2021 and March 2022, which breached Public Health Scotland (PHS) statistical control limits.

“Today’s report from Healthcare Improvement Scotland, into the national increase in neonatal deaths, may be a difficult time, particularly for all those families whose babies died between 1 April 2021 and 31 March 2022 and which this report focuses on. 

"We know that reports like this can also be worrying for anyone in Scotland who is pregnant now. We want all these families to know that Sands is here for them and for anyone in Scotland who has been affected by the death of a baby. 

“Sands will continue to champion the needs of bereaved parents in Scotland and advocate for their voices to be listened to. Parents are experts in the care they and their babies received and can highlight areas for improvement and learning, together with health care professionals.” 

- Jen Coates, Sands' Director of Bereavement Support and Volunteering

Sands provides bereavement support services through its Freephone helpline, online community and resources, and locally through a network of around 100 regional support groups based across the UK and run by trained befrienders, including 10 support groups across Scotland, all offering in-person peer support. 

If there isn't a group near you, or you'd rather seek support online, you can book onto one of Sands’ online support meetings.

To access the full report, visit Healthcare Improvement Scotland's website.

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