February 3, 2023

BaBi Wakefield celebrates 100th baby born into the world leading research programme

Born and Bred in Wakefield (BaBi Wakefield) is celebrating a major milestone of 100 babies being born into the research programme.

The study has been collecting routine data recorded from the services used by consenting parents-to-be and their babies since last April.

Its aim is to link data across health, education and social care to create a bigger picture of families’ lives. Baby number 100 was Vinnie, who was born in Pinderfields Hospital. Vinnie’s mum Chantelle is from Wakefield and signed up to the study during her pregnancy.

Chantelle said: “I signed up to BaBi Wakefield because it sounded like a good idea. It was easy to sign up and my midwife helped me through it during one of our appointments.

“I couldn’t quite believe my son was the 100th baby born into the programme. It’s a great milestone and it feels really good to know we’re playing a part in shaping local services and helping other families.”

Routine recorded data includes lots of different things, such as blood pressure measurements during ante-natal appointments, or the details of baby’s height and weight recorded by health visitors.

The BaBi concept began in Bradford, where it is part of the world leading Born in Bradford research programme. The findings of the research have led to a number of local and international changes and improvements.

For example, as a result of the research on the link between air pollution and ill-health, Bradford Council has cleaned up the buses that pollute the air the most.

Evidence from the research has also led to recommendations in international guidelines for lowering exposure to acrylamide, a chemical which can be formed when starchy foods are cooked or fried at very high temperatures (for example, crisps and chips). Acrylamide can cross the placenta, and exposure during pregnancy can lead to a lower birth weight.

BaBi Wakefield was born in April last year and has been successful in recruiting both midwives and expectant families, recently reaching 600 recruits and exceeding the programme’s target for the first year.

Anyone living in Wakefield District or Kirklees who is receiving maternity care at Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust can sign up to the study.

More information about Babi Wakefield is available on the Mid Yorkshire Hospitals NHS Trust website: www.midyorks.nhs.uk/babi

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