Every year, 15 million babies are born premature worldwide. More than one million of these babies die, and many more face serious, lifelong health challenges. Preterm birth is truly a problem that can happen to every one of us, irrespective of the country we live in, our culture or socioeconomic status.
Worldwide, one in ten babies are born too early – Up to 27,000 babies are born prematurely in Australia each year. Giving birth to a child is one of the paramount, most positive experiences in life. Having a baby born too soon can lead to significant trauma for families. Preterm birth also represents a severe financial burden for many families and our often struggling healthcare systems.
Raising awareness of preterm birth is the first step to defeating it. Preterm birth rates could be significantly reduced and lowered through overall information and improved treatment and care.
November 17 is World Prematurity Day, a globally celebrated awareness day to increase awareness of preterm births as well as the deaths and disabilities due to prematurity and the simple, proven, cost-effective measures that could prevent them.
Find ways to help support premature babies and their families this November.
What is World Prematurity Day?
World Prematurity Day on 17 November is one of the most important days in the year to raise awareness of the challenges and burden of preterm birth globally. The day was initiated by EFCNI and partnering European parent organisations in 2008. Meanwhile, countless individuals and organisations from more than 100 countries join forces with activities, special events and commit to action to help address preterm birth and improve the situation of preterm babies and their families. 2020 sees over 170 organisations highlighting World Prematurity Day.
View the message from The Hon. Scott Morrison MP, Prime Minister of Australia here.
View the message from Dominic Perrottet MP, Premier of NSW here
The Hon. Mark McGowan MLA, Premier of Western Australia also shares his message of support. Read it here.
Previous World Prematurity Day hospital events in Australia: