Stillbirth risks and rate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their babies in North Queensland

Kilcullen, Meegan, Kandasamy, Yogavijayan, Watson, David, and Cadet-James, Yvonne (2021) Stillbirth risks and rate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their babies in North Queensland. Australian and New Zealand Journal of Obstetrics and Gynaecology. (In Press)

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View at Publisher Website: https://doi.org/10.1111/ajo.13422
 
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Abstract

Background: The stillbirth rate for Australian Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander infants remain higher than non-Indigenous rates. Risks for stillbirth include maternal factors such as ethnicity, age, geographic location, and physical health. Fetal risk factors include gestational age, birthweight, and congenital anomalies. The total stillbirth rate for all babies born at the xxx during the study period was 11 per 1000 births.

Aims: To identify Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander stillbirth rates, risk factors and causes in North Queensland.

Materials and Methods: A retrospective chart audit was conducted to identify Indigenous women who had experienced stillbirth in the Townsville University Hospital between January 2005 and December 2014. Results: Thirty-two charts were available for audit. The stillbirth rate for non-Indigenous infants was 10.3 per 1000 births. The stillbirth rate for Indigenous infants was 11.7 per 1000 births. Almost half of the women lived in rural, remote or very remote areas. Maternal risk factors included poorer physical health, such as obesity, diabetes, hypertension, and smoking, fertility issues and lack of antenatal care. Fetal risk factors included congenital anomalies, including cardiac and skeletal abnormalities, placental disorders, and preterm birth.

Conclusions: Stillbirth risk remains higher for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and their babies. Supporting women to enhance their health is paramount, particularly during pregnancy. Further, increasing awareness of stillbirth risk factors through education for both women and health care professionals will support culturally responsive care for women and their families to mitigate stillbirth risk and enhance pregnancy outcomes in non-urban Queensland.

Item ID: 68960
Item Type: Article (Research - C1)
ISSN: 1479-828X
Keywords: stillbirth, risk, rate, Indigenous, North Queensland
Copyright Information: © 2021 The Royal Australian and New Zealand College of Obstetricians and Gynaecologists
Funders: The Townsville Hospital and Health Service Study, Education and Research Trust Fund
Date Deposited: 23 Aug 2021 02:11
FoR Codes: 45 INDIGENOUS STUDIES > 4504 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health and wellbeing > 450414 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers and babies health and wellbeing @ 100%
SEO Codes: 21 INDIGENOUS > 2103 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health > 210302 Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander health status and outcomes @ 100%
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