The Australian Preterm Birth Prevention Alliance strongly believes in the power of partnering with healthcare consumers to work together to help reduce the rate of preterm birth in Australia.
The importance of consumer advocacy and representation in this area has been acknowledged by the inclusion of a consumer representative as one of the Chief Investigators on the NHMRC grant that underpins the Alliance.
In addition to her role as a perinatal researcher, Dr Natasha Donnolley has been involved in maternal and perinatal consumer representation for over 15 years and has extensive experience in supporting women and families as well as providing advice and direction to governments and NGOs alike.
Natasha also has first-hand experience of preterm birth, with her third child being born at 31 weeks gestation due to placenta praevia with placental abruption. Through her established networks with other consumer advocates and organisations, including the PSANZ Consumer Advisory Panel, Natasha provides a link between the Alliance and those directly affected by our work.
This ensures a strong parent voice is present in all of the Alliance’s work as well as dissemination of the results and findings to the parenting community.
While prevention is the ultimate aim of the Alliance, not all preterm births can be avoided. In these cases parents and families may benefit from the support of others who have walked in their shoes already. There are a number of wonderful consumer organisations around Australia that provide support for families experiencing preterm birth.
Some of these organisations are also involved in research associated with premature birth – both in prevention and the care that is required after birth.
Some links to relevant consumer-based organisations and resources: