A premature baby is an infant born before 37 weeks pregnant.

Premature baby in hospital

Babies born before the full gestational period are not fully developed. There are different levels of prematurity, and generally the risk to the baby's health increases the earlier the birth is - babies at highest risk are those born before week 26.

Around 60,000 babies are born prematurely each year in the UK and many suffer lifelong consequences as a result. Premature birth is the leading cause of neonatal death in the UK.

If we are to improve outcomes for babies it is crucial that we focus on research to improve prediction, prevention and treatment of preterm labour.

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Why our work is neccessary

  • Martin with baby Hugo.

    Martin and Hugo

    Martin Parker is daddy to Hugo who sadly died aged 35 days in March 2014. Hugo had been born 16 weeks prematurely because his mummy, Leigh, had the rare, life-threatening pregnancy complications HELLP syndrome and preeclampsia.

  • Baby Indie Evelina

    Indie Evelina - the little baby who beat the odds only to be taken later

    Indie fought through numerous conditions and setbacks only to pass away a month after she had been released from hospital.

  • Happy baby Mason at home.

    No one could tell us why Mason was preterm

    Up until the day Mason was born I was having the perfect pregnancy. I had recently started feeling kicks and I was loving being pregnant. Then Mason made an unexpected arrival at just 25 weeks into my pregnancy. Nobody has ever been able to us why.

  • Happy Warwick with his baby brother.

    Warwick - a miracle baby

    I was enjoying my pregnancy immensely when, out of nowhere, I started having pains at 29 weeks. Never actually thinking I was in labour we went to the hospital to get 'checked out'. It was then I was told I was in early labour and given drugs to help the baby's lungs.