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Te Kāhui Oranga ō Nuku welcomes PMMRC report

The leading body for obstetrics and gynaecology and women’s health in New Zealand has welcomed the Perinatal and Maternal Mortality Review Committee’s (PMMRC) latest report, calling on government and the health sector to implement its recommendations.

The report investigates the factors contributing to perinatal mortality (stillbirths and baby deaths in the first 28 days of life), maternal deaths and neonatal brain injury (encephalopathy). It shows that the rate of stillbirth has significantly reduced overall since 2007 and has reduced for babies of Māori and NZ European mothers, but not for other ethnic groups.

Chair of the Te Kāhui Oranga ō Nuku of the Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists (RANZCOG), Dr Celia Devenish, called for equitable access to pregnancy screening tools, services and treatment.

“Gaps and inequities that exist in maternity services in New Zealand need to be urgently addressed,” Dr Devenish said. “Across New Zealand, groups of women are unable to access the care they need for themselves and their unborn babies. For example, antenatal screening to identify Down syndrome and other conditions should be a choice available for all women in New Zealand. However there is a co-payment required for the scan component of the test, which can exceed $60.

“RANZCOG’s Te Kāhui Oranga ō Nuku supports the PMMRC and its mission to improve the outcomes of mothers and babies in Aotearoa/New Zealand.”


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