Scientific committee and programme development
Lead by Prof. Alex Heazell the scientific committee is composed of parents, parents’ advocates and leading healthcare professionals, researchers and other experts from a wide range of disciplines. 18 countries are represented on the committee and about one-third of the members (both professionals and advocates) have personal experience of losing a baby during pregnancy or in the neonatal period.
The committees main objective was to ensure an innovative programme that meets local, regional and global needs. The scientific programme was developed following an open consultation process the scientific committee.
You can read more about the scientific committee members here.
The 2019 conference will address the most innovative research and clinical practices and focused on 7 overarching objectives, each of which will guide the conference programming:
- To promote the provision of healthcare services based on collaboration between parents (advocates), health professionals from multidisciplinary contexts and public health administration.
- To promote evidence-based best practices in clinical and bereavement care.
- To humanise perinatal bereavement care by increasing awareness and understanding of parents’ needs.
- To reduce perinatal mortality through the promotion of prevention strategies and research into mortality risk factors.
- To foster the development of research, innovation and dissemination of scientific knowledge on perinatal death and bereavement.
- To improve the work-life quality of healthcare professionals and explore their needs.
- To reduce the socio-economic costs of perinatal death.
Central themes of the conference
- Collaboration and partnership as fundamental to the provision of high quality bereavement care and effective mortality reduction.
- Informed choice, shared decision-making and ethics as principles of high quality bereavement care.
- Collaborative, integrated approaches between healthcare and other public institutions and civil society as key to providing full support for bereaved parents in the short and long-term.
Key conference topics
The conference addresses the following areas:
|Main conference themes and topic areas|
|Parents’ experiences of care - listening to parents and understanding their needs|
|Improving care quality through the development and implementation of care standards and practice guidelines|
|Providing perinatal and neonatal palliative care|
|Care provision following detection of life limiting fetal anomalies (diagnosis, counselling and decision-making, care)|
|Causes and risk factors for perinatal death|
|Perinatal mortality prevention strategies|
|Classification, investigation and audit of perinatal death|
|Pregnancy after loss|
|Community based care: follow-up care, support associations and support groups|
|Perinatal bereavement: personal and social experiences of grief|
|Woman-centred birth planning and management (communication and decision-making, mode of birth, pain management, sedative use, etc.)|
|Puerperal care (lactation suppression, milk donation)|
|Respectful disposition: practices and bioethics in disposition of the body and handling of remains/tissue|
|The legal framework of stillbirth: legal and social personhood, care legislation, criminalisation|
|Postpartum care/rituals following intrauterine death or neonatal death (seeing and caring for the baby and keeping memory objects and taking photographs)|
|Healthcare professionals experiences of perinatal death and systems to support healthcare professionals|
|The socio-economic impact of perinatal death|
|Diagnosis and communication of bad news|