Clinic reduces number of premature births by 15%

Preterm Surveillance at St. Thomas’ Hospital wins NHS award for its success


Having a baby prematurely can be an anxious time for any mum-to-be, but some places in the UK are going above and beyond to make it less of a nerve-wrecking experience.


The Preterm Surveillance Clinic at St. Thomas’ Hospital has been given the NHS Innovation Challenge award after successfully reducing the number of premature births in South East London.

The clinic, funded by baby charity Tommy’s, has cut down the pre-term rate by 15%, helped 90% of high-risk women have a healthy baby at full-term, and is continually influencing developments in other hospitals across the UK.

Led by Professor Andrew Shennan, the clinic was recognised in the ‘Better Management of Pregnancy’ category after their focus on screening, treating, and preventing pre-eclampsia and premature births, had such a positive impact.

As a prize, they’ve been awarded a cash sum of £150,000 from the Department of Health.

“We’re delighted that the Preterm Surveillance Clinic has been recognised for it’s innovative approach,” said Professor Shennan.

“Premature birth is often caused by a combination of different complex factors, and so far no single strategy has been effective in reducing pre-term rates. We are very proud that our clinic is bucking that trend.”

Tommy’s funds medical research into the causes of premature births, stillbirths and miscarriages, and provides a free information service to educate parents-to-be about health in pregnancy.

If your baby was born before early, check out our guide on how to get that extra help, what immunisations are needed, and information on the improvements being made in this specialist area.

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