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BIRTH TRAUMA AWARENESS WEEK
16-23 JULY 2023

What you can do
1. Shine the light on #birthtrauma

Did you know one in three women in Australia experience birth trauma? Birth Trauma Awareness Week aims to raise awareness for the thousands of families impacted by birth trauma, which has a ripple effect on not only the birthing woman, but her children, her partner and their community. 

Of the 100,000 women each year who experience birth trauma, 70,000 have birth trauma because of mistreatment and disrespectful care. That's why one of the best ways to prevent birth trauma is to ensure women have access to continuity of care with a known care provider. Unfortunately, less than one in eight birth women in Australia have access to such models of maternity care. One of MCA's main goals is to advocate for better access to continuity of care in order to prevent more women from suffering birth trauma.

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2. Have your say at NSW Parliamentary Inquiry into Birth Trauma

Following a number of complaints from women birthing in NSW hospitals and the campaigning of organisations such as MCA, a Select Committee to inquire into and report on birth trauma was established in June 2023 and will be chaired by Animal Justice MLC Emma Hurst,

 

The Committee is inviting submissions from women, members of the community and organisations about their experiences and views on birth trauma, including experiences of obstetric violence, lack of informed consent and harassment by healthcare providers.

Submissions close on 11 August 2023.

 

For more information and to complete your submission, please visit the parliamentary committee website

Alternatively, the Maternity Consumer Network (MCN) have put together a form to make it easier for individuals to share their experience of birth trauma in NSW. Please click the link to lodge your submission via MCN.

3. Share your birth experiences

Did you know you can submit your feedback on the service you received at hospital?  Hospitals do have formal feedback channels, but when thrust into life as a newborn mother, and recovering from a traumatic birth, it can be too difficult to even find the relevant email addresses, let believe in the possibility of a meaningful outcome.

That's why we developed Best Birth Finder - a system for women to share their experiences and receive a draft feedback email with relevant email addresses.  By sharing their experiences, other women can find reviews of birth services and hospitals have a much better chance of receiving feedback from their community.

4. Attend Birth Trauma Awareness Week events

A number of events are being held around the country to shine the spotlight on birth trauma. Look out for an event near you:

More resources and support

Understand birth trauma better by listening to discussions by health consumers, clinicians and those with lived experience in the podcast episodes below. If you need more support, please reach out to trusted friends, family and relevant professionals, or contact PANDA.org.au or COPE.org.au.

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