Preterm Birth Prevention Initiative - Service Delivery - 25 August 2021 at 12:30pm (AEST)


The focus of the web conference is on the key strategies and successes of the Preterm Birth Prevention Initiative at Royal Hobart Hospital and Canberra Health Services.

In May web conference Prof John Newnham set the scene of Preterm Birth Prevention Initiative in Australia.(presentation available here)
How a comprehensive and multifaceted PTB Prevention Birth Program (5 key interventions)  aimed at clinicians and general public can significantly lower the rate of PTB. This initiative showed a significant increase of births in the 39 week.
Which is significant considering the finding from The Fourth Australian Atlas of Healthcare Variation  on early birth and the health risks.
Shifting the conversation to the importance of 39 weeks based on evidence based practice.

Preterm Birth Prevention at Royal Hobart Hospital – Dr Lindsay Edwards
Since 2015, Tasmania has had the highest preterm birth rate in the country at 11.3% of all births. Tasmania was the second state behind Western Australia to officially launch a preterm birth prevention initiative.
The Whole Nine Months Tasmania aims to bring together clinical leaders, the Tasmanian health department, and the community, to safely lower the preterm birth rate in the State.

Key strategies for Tasmania include:

  • The provision of appropriate ultrasound services for the accurate measurement and reporting of cervical length at the mid-trimester anatomy scan.
  • Identifying and referring women with risk factors for preterm birth (short cervix and/or previous preterm delivery before 34 weeks) for cervical surveillance through the Preterm Birth Clinic.
  • Encouragement of smoking cessation
  • Avoidance of late preterm and early term deliveries without a clear medical or obstetric indication.
  • Support for midwifery-led continuity of care models.
  • Support for research into the possible causes of high preterm birth rates in Tasmania.

The First Nine Months ACT.  How did we do it and how has it gone? – Dr Boon Lim
The First nine Months ACT initiative was launched in February 2019.  The program followed the guidelines from the Australian Preterm Birth Prevention Alliance.  This project was supported by a generous philanthropic donation through the Canberra Hospital Foundation.  The project involved an active education campaign, the setting up of a dedicated preterm birth prevention clinic and the appointment of a midwife to this clinic to work alongside 2 obstetricians to provide continuity of care.  The project has been successful and the results have been published in the March 2021 edition of ANZJOG.


About the presenters:

Dr Lindsay Edwards
Obstetrician and Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist
Royal Hobart Hospital
Dr Lindsay Edwards (MBBS, FRANZCOG, CMFM, DDU) is an Obstetrician and Maternal Fetal Medicine Specialist at the Royal Hobart Hospital. A passionate Tasmanian, Lindsay studied at the University of Tasmania before undertaking specialist training in Tasmania and later Victoria. In 2017 Lindsay returned to Hobart to establish a Maternal Fetal Medicine service for the women of Tasmania. Lindsay’s experience lies in the care of high-risk pregnancies, and she has a special interest in preterm birth prevention, fetal growth restriction, obstetric ultrasound, and stillbirth prevention.

Dr Boon Lim
Staff OB/GYN
Canberra Health Services
Boon is a senior staff obstetrician and gynaecologist at Canberra Health Services.  He is also Executive and Clinical Director of the Division of Women, Youth and Children.  His special interest areas include maternal fetal medicine, preterm birth prevention and high risk pregnancies.  In 2019, Boon presented evidence to the Therapeutic Goods Administration to support the use of progesterone for the prevention of preterm births.  This has now been approved as an indication for the prevention of preterm labour and from June 2021 will be listed for this indication in the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme.


How can I join this web meeting?

Please register for this event.  Details on how to join this Web Conference will then be emailed to you.  You can also visit our members website

All staff of Member Services are welcome to join this meeting. If you do not have a website account, you will need to create an account first.