Tackling inequalities in maternity care and baby loss

We’re setting up an ‘Equality in Miscarriage and Pregnancy Care’ project to tackle the disproportionate risks that mothers face in some communities with help from the Government’s Tampon Tax Fund.
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Over 1 million mothers go through pregnancy every year in the UK. However, those who are vulnerable or disadvantaged are more likely to lose their baby during pregnancy or birth – particularly mothers from Black, Asian, minority and ethnic communities and low-income groups. We know this isn’t good enough.  

Our recent miscarriage research Series in The Lancet found Black mothers are at a 40% higher risk of miscarriage than White mothers. Previous research also shows Black and Asian babies are up to twice as likely to be stillborn or die as a newborn, Black mothers are 4 times more likely to die in childbirth, and Asian women twice as likely. Meanwhile, babies in the most deprived areas of the country have a 47% - 129% greater risk of poor health compared to those in the least deprived areas. Funding for this new project will help us in our mission to change this.  

We’ve recently been awarded vital support from the Government’s Tampon Tax Fund to help tackle these inequalities by setting up our  ‘Equality in Miscarriage and Pregnancy Care’ project. The new service will provide specialist support for disadvantaged and underrepresented women across England who have experience more than one miscarriage.  

The funding from this project will also allow us to create a digital tool, including a miscarriage risk calculator, for women who have experienced recurrent loss. The tools will provide accurate information about their chances of having a baby and suggest personalised changes that could help reduce their risk. 

Our chief executive, Jane Brewin, said:

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“Right now, women who come from minority ethnic backgrounds or live in economically deprived areas are more likely to experience a miscarriage – and yet they also face more barriers to access the care that could prevent such a loss, or the support they may need if it happens. These inequalities are unacceptable.  

“We’re absolutely delighted to receive a grant from the Tampon Tax Fund for our ‘Equality in Miscarriage and Pregnancy Care’ project, which aims to tackle this disparity, supporting and empowering some of the most vulnerable women. Like many charities, our fundraising has been hit hard by the Covid-19 pandemic, so we’re hugely grateful for this support enabling us to continue our vital work.”