Vision and Aims
Our vision is to deliver excellence in education, practice and research.
- To develop evidence-based education and professional development programmes for health care and allied professionals involved in the care of multiple birth families
- To establish standards for education and professional development for health care and allied professionals
- To establish a dedicated research programme which will provide an evidence base for practice
- To support the provision of best possible care for babies, children and their families
- To collaborate with families to inform education, practice and research
Why are multiple births important?
In England and Wales, the rates of multiple birth have increased over the last 40 years from 10 per 1,000 live births in 1980 to 15.9 per 1,000 in 2016 (Office for National Statistics, 2017). The increased incidence of multiple births is attributed to the increased birth rate, increased maternal age, advances in assisted conception and the development of obstetric, midwifery and neonatal practice which has enabled more multiples to survive (NICE, 2011; Twin and Multiple Birth Association [Tamba], 2013; Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority, 2015). Multiple pregnancies account for higher and, disproportionate numbers, of stillbirths and neonatal deaths in the UK (ONS, 2016; Montacute and Bunn, 2016). Over 50% of twins and almost all triplets are born before 37 weeks gestation and these account for approximately 15-20% of all admissions to neonatal units (Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology, 2011). The early parenting role is critical and, for parents of multiples, the priorities and challenges are multiplied (Tamba, 2009). It is widely acknowledged that the outcomes for multiple birth families are poorer compared with singletons (Blondel and Kaminski, 2002; McKay, 2010; Wenze, Battle and Tezanos, 2015).
Blondel, B. and Kaminski, M. (2002) Trends in the occurrence, determinants and consequences of multiple births. Seminars in Perinatology 26(4): pp. 239-249.
Human Fertilisation and Embryology Authority (2015) Improving Outcomes for Fertility Patients: Multiple Births 2015. Available at: http://www.hfea.gov.uk/6456.html.
McKay, S. (2010) The effects of twins and multiple births on families and their living standards. London: Twin and Multiple Birth Association.
Montacute, R. and Bunn, S. (2016) Infant Mortality and Stillbirth in the UK, Number 527 May 2016. London: The Parliamentary Office of Science and Technology.
National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (2011) Multiple Pregnancy: Antenatal care for twin and triplet pregnancies. London: NICE.
Office for National Statistics (2017) Birth Characteristics in England and Wales : 2016. Available at: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/livebirths/bulletins/birthcharacteristicsinenglandandwales/2016#the-small-fall-in-the-rate-of-women-having- multiple-births-was-driven-by-those-aged-30-and-over.
Office for National Statistics (2016). Birth Characteristics in England and Wales: 2015. Available at: https://www.ons.gov.uk/peoplepopulationandcommunity/birthsdeathsandmarriages/livebirths/bulletins/birthcharacteristicsinenglandandwales/2015#the-small-rise-in-the-rate-of-women-having-multiple-births-has-been-driven-by-those-aged-25-to-29
Royal College of Obstetrics and Gynaecology (2011) Multiple Pregnancy. London: RCOG.
Twin and Multiple Birth Association (2009) Multiple Failings. Tamba: Guildford.
Twin and Multiple Birth Association. (2013) Key Statistics on multiple births. London: Tamba.
Wenze, S.J., Battle, C.L., and Tezanos, K.M. (2015) Raising multiples: mental health of mothers and fathers in early parenthood. Available at: https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC4610720/