Impact of Tommy's clinics

Our NHS-supported clinics deliver high quality specialist pre-conception and pregnancy care, recruiting families to clinical trials and putting our latest research findings into practice.
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All of the work at our clinics has the goal of improving health outcomes and developing evidence based practice to reduce the number of babies who die during pregnancy or birth.

As part of our innovative research model, each research centre is associated with a number of NHS antenatal clinics and recurrent miscarriage clinics. At these clinics, members of our research team translate medical research into clinical practice in real-time. This means that patients can access cutting-edge clinical care, as well as have the opportunity to participate in medical trials.

Tommys National Centre for Miscarriage Research

Tommy’s National Centre for Miscarriage Research runs recurrent miscarriage clinics across 3 different sites in the UK.

At our recurrent miscarriage clinics, women and their partners are given the opportunity to take part in research trials, accessing cutting-edge treatments and tests. 

“The staff at the Tommy’s clinic at Birmingham Women’s Hospital seemed to understand how we felt and didn’t diminish what we’d been through. For the first time we felt hope. In the end, Tommy’s gave us more than hope; they gave us our rainbow baby.”

Kirsty from Preston had 3 miscarriages before she was referred to Tommy’s National Centre for Miscarriage Research clinic in Birmingham. She gave birth to her rainbow baby in 2019. Read Kirsty’s story here.

  • High patient satisfaction levels: 100% of patients attending the clinic reported that they would be likely or extremely likely to recommend our services to friends and family if they needed similar care or treatment (Birmingham Women’s and Children’s NHS Foundation Trust Friends and Family Test survey).
  • 100% reported that our clinical staff always explained things in a way that they could understand and expressed that they had always been kept informed about their care in a way that they could understand and found acceptable.
  • At our Coventry clinic, 100% of patients reported the service given as excellent and said they would recommend it to a friend in a similar situation. 78% felt that the services that they had received had helped them a great deal to cope more effectively with the problem and the remaining 22% felt somewhat helped. If they were to seek help again, 92% said they would definitely return to the services and the remaining 11% thought they would do so.
  • Numbers of patients seen in the clinics: In total, our clinics saw around 16,099 patients between 2019-2020. Approximately 80% of patients attending our clinics over the past year were from the local population and 20% from elsewhere in the UK and even abroad.
    • New recurrent miscarriage referrals: 8,102
    • Early pregnancy consultations: 7,997
  • Individuals recruited to pregnancy-related clinical trials: In total 1,788 individuals were recruited over the past year to pregnancy related clinical trials in progress at our centres. (Birmingham: 491, Coventry: 984, Imperial: 313).

Tommy's Manchester Research Centre 

Our dedicated team of researchers in Manchester run a network of 6 research clinics. At our clinics, we offer specialist care to women at high risk of pregnancy loss. These women have a chance to take part in clinical studies that improve our understanding of stillbirth, fetal growth restriction, hypertension (high blood pressure) and diabetes. The clinics allow us to translate research breakthroughs into clinical practice.

Our model is very successful. Since 2010, our research centre has reduced the stillbirth rate in the Greater Manchester area by 32% against a much lower national average rate of reduction.

 

At our clinics, we offer patients the latest evidence-based tests and treatments, and give them the opportunity to participate in clinical trials to advance our life-saving research. In 2021, we:

  • Performed 5,300 ultrasound scans in our clinics; which equates to approximately 442 women scanned per month, and is over a 1,000 more than in 2018/19.
  • Recruited a total of 1,999 participants to clinical trials at our centre (661 to trials funded by Tommy’s and 1,338 to trials funded from external sources)
  • Improved our patient score from an average of 88% in 2019 to 100% of the women surveyed so far this year saying that they would recommend our clinics to friends and family.
  • Are seeing more women from Black and minority ethnic origin: 15% of women seen in our research clinics are Black, and 19% are of Asian origin, compared to 12% and 17% of women seen at St Mary’s Hospital respectively.

“The Rainbow clinic scans were so reassuring. We don’t know why our daughter died at full term but we had been told its likely due to the placenta failing. Alex’s scans and explanations of how the placenta is working has reassured us so much."

We have now treated 35 women with Chronic Histiocytic Intervillositis (CHI) attending the research clinics who have received a bespoke treatment plan for this condition. To date, all pregnancies continuing beyond 20 weeks’ gestation ended in a live birth. This is particularly remarkable given that CHI is a condition with a 50% mortality rate.

  • Over the eight years that the translational clinics have been in place at St Mary’s Hospital, there has been over 50% reduction in the number of babies with Fetal Growth Restriction born after 38 weeks.
  • The Rainbow Clinic, which provides specialist support in pregnancy following a stillbirth or neonatal death, has now been adopted by all maternity care providers in the Greater Manchester Strategic Clinical Network. There are 13 active Rainbow Clinics, with another 3 ready to launch and 21 clinics in development.
  • Since 2015, the stillbirth rate across the Greater Manchester and East Cheshire Strategic Clinical Network fell by 19% from 4.64 per 1,000 births in 2015 to 3.8 per 1,000 births in 2019, which is greater than the national rate of decline. 

“We can’t thank you enough for seeing us with our 2nd pregnancy. You’ve given us hope to dream again, that we might actually bring home Eliza’s sister. Thank you. Totally worth the 3-hour drive each way. We’d do it again in a heartbeat.”