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Families Light Candles To Remember Lost Babies

Fuseworks Media
Fuseworks Media
Families Light Candles To Remember Lost Babies

Lower Hutt mother Laura Hurley's baby girl died in her uterus at 38 weeks, just under a year ago, after an apparently normal pregnancy, her first.

"I hadn't felt her move and we went down to the hospital and they found no heartbeat and the next day they induced me," Ms Hurley told NZPA today.

"She came home with us for a week after she was born and we had a little service for her about a week later. It was really nice to be able to do that."

The baby was given the name of Tabitha Rose and Ms Hurley said her family would be lighting a candle at Petone Beach tonight in her remembrance . Today marks International Baby Loss Awareness day.

She said talking about Tabitha Rose helped keep the memory alive.

"It's something that you don't necessarily hear a lot about, especially when women are pregnant."

Ms Hurley said while they were offered a post-mortem, they decided not to.

"When you have been through something like that, when you know what a post-mortem involves...I can imagine that lots of people don't want to put their babies through that."

But she said if the reasons why a postmortem might help prevent other deaths in future was better explained, more parents might agree.

Vicki Culling, who is on the Perinatal and Maternity Mortality Committee, chairs baby loss support group SANDS and a bereaved parent herself, said she hoped today's report from the committee would highlight the lack of awareness over the staggering number of newborn babies, or in-utero babies, who died each year -- 700.

That included babies who were terminated due to abnormalities.

She said New Zealand, like many countries, had a high rate of third trimester, unexplained still births.

Today's report was leading the world in trying to find out why, she said.

"There certainly is a lack of any information around those stillbirth figures, definitely."

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