Safeguarding women and children with landmark research - Barts Charity
mum and baby centre

Safeguarding women and children with landmark research

With our funding, the pioneering Barts Research Centre for Women’s Health is tackling health issues in mothers and babies in East London and across the UK.

  • Date: July 23, 2020

An increased risk 

The ethnically diverse population of East London has a significantly increased risk of maternal and newborn complications, such as diabetes. In fact, East London has the highest rates of diabetes in all of England, with 10-15% of local mothers developing it in pregnancy.

With the help of our supporters’ donations, the Barts Research Centre for Women’s Health is undertaking landmark research to improve the health of women before, during and after pregnancy.

The difference we’re making

With our funding, researchers are able to tackle health inequalities in our community, whilst also publishing research with a global impact. Examples of this include research into how anaemia in pregnancy doubles the risk of maternal death worldwide.

Our funding has also enabled a suite of research projects into issues such as:

  • Improving IVF treatments using novel time-lapse imaging technology;
  • Using nutritional supplements to prevent diabetes in pregnancy.
"Diabetes, bleeding following childbirth, obesity – these are all key problems for our local community. But we’re creating visibility at a national level too, addressing problems in mothers who need it most and helping to put findings into clinical practice nationwide."
Professor Shakila Thangaratinam, Professor of Maternal and Perinatal Health

Tackling the issues that matter

The new Centre supports the training of new researchers. It draws upon the network of maternal facilities across the hospitals of Barts Health. This includes at Whipps Cross Hospital, where a new £6.8m Barts Charity-funded Women’s Health Centre has recently opened.

The local community will be involved in the research, with patient and public engagement ensuring that the Centre tackles the issues that really matter to the local population, generating findings that make a real difference to women’s health.

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