Child protection in the UK

The National Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Children (NSPCC) has published How safe are our children? 2017: the most comprehensive overview of child protection in the UK.

This fifth annual report compiles and analyses the most up-to-date child protection data that exists across the UK for 2017. It sets out twenty different indicators, each of which looks at the question of ‘how safe are our children?’ from a different perspective. The report also includes historic data, to help track progress over time.

Retrospective cohort study of all deaths among infants born between 22 and 27 completed weeks of gestation

The aim of this research is to assess causes and circumstances of deaths in extremely low gestational age neonates (ELGANs) born in Switzerland over a 3-year period | BMJ Open

Design: Population-based, retrospective cohort study.

Setting: All nine level III perinatal centres (neonatal intensive care units (NICUs) and affiliated obstetrical services) in Switzerland.

Patients: ELGANs with a gestational age (GA) <28 weeks who died between 1 July 2012 and 30 June 2015.

Results: A total of 594 deaths were recorded with 280 (47%) stillbirths and 314 (53%) deaths after live birth. Of the latter, 185 (59%) occurred in the delivery room and 129 (41%) following admission to an NICU. Most liveborn infants dying in the delivery room had a GA ≤24 weeks and died following primary non-intervention. In contrast, NICU deaths occurred following unrestricted life support regardless of GA. End-of-life decision-making and redirection of care were based on medical futility and anticipated poor quality of life in 69% and 28% of patients, respectively. Most infants were extubated before death (87%).

Conclusions: In Switzerland, most deaths among infants born at less than 24 weeks of gestation occurred in the delivery room. In contrast, most deaths of ELGANs with a GA ≥24 weeks were observed following unrestricted provisional intensive care, end-of-life decision-making and redirection of care in the NICU regardless of the degree of immaturity.

Full reference: Berger, T.M. et al. (2017) Retrospective cohort study of all deaths among infants born between 22 and 27 completed weeks of gestation in Switzerland over a 3-year period. BMJ Open. 7:e015179

Women’s Smoking Status at Time of Delivery

This report presents the latest results and trends from the women’s smoking status at time of delivery (SATOD) data collection in England. 

The results provide a measure of the prevalence of smoking among pregnant women at Commissioning Region, Region and Clinical Commissioning Group level.

Key facts

In 2016/17:

  • 10.5 per cent of pregnant women were known to be smokers at the time of delivery. This compares to 10.6 per cent for the previous year (2015/16), and is down from 15.1 per cent in 2006/07.
  • This is the second consecutive year that the proportion has been below the national ambition of 11 per cent.
  • The CCGs with the lowest proportion of women known to be smokers at the time of delivery were NHS West London (2.3 per cent), NHS Richmond (2.5) and NHS Hammersmith and Fulham (2.7).
  • The CCGs with the highest proportion were NHS Blackpool (28.1 per cent), NHS Hull (22.9) and NHS North East Lincolnshire (22.3).
  • 104 out of 209 CCGs met the national ambition of 11 per cent or less.

The report can be viewed here

Child poverty in the UK

The Campaign group End Child Poverty has published its latest Child poverty map of the UK 2016.  The map provides statistics on the level of child poverty in each constituency, local authority and ward in the UK.  It highlights there  are now more than three and a half million children living in poverty in the UK, and that whilst child poverty exists in every part of the country, as many as 47% of children are living in poverty in some areas  compared to one in ten in others.

Click on the image below to view the interactive map:

Additional link: RCPCH press release