Updated February 2014

Stillbirth statistics

In 2010, the UK was amongst the countries with the highest rate of stillbirths (after 28 weeks of pregnancy). The European countries with the highest stillbirth rates were France (4.3 stillbirths per 1,000 live births), followed by Latvia (4.1 stillbirths per 1,000 live births), Brussels (4.1 stillbirths per 1,000 live births ), and Romania (4.0 stillbirths per 1,000 live births ). England and Wales had a stillbirth rate of 3.8 stillbirths per 1,000 live births, followed by Scotland (3.6 stillbirths per 1,000 live births) and Northern Ireland (3.4 stillbirths per 1,000 live births) [1].

The European countries with the lowest stillbirth rates were the Czeck Republic (1.3 stillbirths per 1,000 live births), Iceland (1.8 stillbirths per 1,000 live births), and Finland (2.o stillbirths per 1,000 live births) [1].

England and Wales

  • In 2012, the stillbirth rate in England was 4.9 per 1,000 births [2]. North east England had the lowest stillbirth rate with 3.8 stillbirths per 1,000 births. London has the highest stillbirth rate at 5.7, higher even than overall rate [3]. 
  • In 2012, the stillbirth rate in Wales was 5.1 per 1,000 births [2].
  • In the last 5 years the stillbirth rate in England and Wales has dropped from 5.1 per 1,000 births in 2008 [2].
  • In 1992, the stillbirth rate in England and Wales was 5.2 per 1,000 births [2].
  • When records began in 1927, the stillbirth rate in England and Wales was 38.3 per 1,000 births. By the 1960s it had dropped to 19.8 per 1,000 births [2].
  • The majority of stillbirths in 2012 (80.8 percent) were caused by abnormal development or immaturity of the baby [3].   

Scotland

  • The stillbirth rate in Scotland for 2012 was 4.7 per 1,000 births. This is a drop from 5.1 per 1,000 births in 2011 and 5.4 in 1,000 in 2008. In 1992 the stillbirth rate was 5.4 per 1,000 births [4].
  • Stillbirth rate in Scotland peaked in the late 1940s at 29.2 per 1,000 births [4]. 
  • Half of stillbirths were caused by developmental problems in the baby [4].
  • 22 percent of stillbirths were caused by complications in placenta and cord development [4].

Northern Ireland

  • In 2012 there were 4.2 stillbirths per 1,000 births, compared with a rate of 3.6 per 1,000 births in 2011 [5].
  • The stillbirth rate has reduced from 6.9 stillbirths per 1,000 births in 1982. In the 1060s, the stillbirth rate in Northern Ireland was 20.5 per 1,000 births [5].
  • 48 percent of stillbirths in 2012 were caused by developmental problems in the baby [5].
  • 21 percent of stillbirths were caused by problems in placenta and cord developments [5].
  • 17 percent of stillbirths were caused by chromosomal abnormalities and congenital malformations in the baby [5].

Sources

[1] Europeristat, European perinatal health report: health and care of pregnant women and babies in 2010, European Commission Directorate for Health and Consumers, Paris Inserm, 2010. Also Available at: http://www.europeristat.com/images/doc/Peristat%202013%20V2.pdf (accessed 3 March 2014)

[2] Office for National Statistics, Characterists of live birth 1, England and Wales 2012. London ONS, 2013. Available from: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/publications/re-reference-tables.html?edition=tcm%3A77-314475 (acceesed 17 February 2014)

[3] Office for National Statistics, Death registration summary table, England and Wales 2012, London ONS, 2013. Available from: http://www.ons.gov.uk/ons/publications/re-reference-tables.html?edition=tcm%3A77-314473 (accessed 17 February 2014)

[4] National Records of Scotland, Vital events reference tables 2012, Edinburgh NRS, 2013. Available from: http://www.gro-scotland.gov.uk/statistics/theme/vital-events/general/ref-tables/2012/section-4-stillbirths-and-infant-deaths.html (accessed 17 February 2014)

[5] Northern Ireland Statistics and Research Agency, Registrar General annual report 2011, Belfast NISRA, 2013. Available from: http://www.nisra.gov.uk/archive/demography/publications/annual_reports/2012/RG2012.pdf (accessed 17 February 2014)


In this section


Employment
Lifestyle statistics

Miscarriage statistics

Pre-eclampsia statistics

Premature birth statistics

Stillbirth statistics

Toxoplasmosis statistics


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