Helping mothers give their babies the healthiest start to life

Published on
29 August 2023

Imagine a world where every mother and her baby receive the best possible care, backed by ground-breaking medical research. Thanks to the incredible donations to the Royal Hobart Hospital Research Foundation, this vision is becoming a reality. The generosity of the community has made it possible for us to fund vital research projects that focus on supporting mums and their precious little ones.

One Foundation-funded study that concluded earlier this year, focused on improving the health outcomes for pregnant women. Two-thirds of Australian adults grapple with the burden of being overweight or obese, and unfortunately, expecting mothers often contribute to this alarming trend. Acknowledging the pressing need for change, Dr Michelle Kilpatrick spearheaded the Health in Preconception, Pregnancy, and Post-Birth (HiPPP) study at the Royal Hobart Hospital.

Dr Kilpatrick and her team explored strategies to empower pregnant women attending the hospital, to help them make positive lifestyle changes to improve health outcomes for themselves and their precious babies. The HiPPP study triumphed by establishing ground-breaking partnerships with researchers and clinicians from hospitals across the country and overseas to implement evidence-based training programs to provide practical and sustainable support to mothers.

Dr Kilpatrick expressed her heartfelt gratitude acknowledging that this research “would not have been possible without the support of the Foundation and we thank the donors for helping improve the health of mothers and babies in Tasmania."

To continue to support mothers and their babies, the Foundation funded another crucial study this year that is focused on women grappling with chronic kidney disease (CKD) who aspire to start a family. As the prevalence of kidney disease continues to rise, particularly among women contemplating motherhood, this project carries immense significance. Led by Prof Matthew Jose, the project aims to provide population estimates linking kidney function to maternal and baby outcomes. By unravelling this crucial connection, the study seeks to lay the groundwork for implementing preventative measures and will allow healthcare professionals to provide informed guidance and support to women who want to start a family.

Thanks to all our donors for supporting the Foundation and the next generations of Tasmanians.

You can support research to help mothers and their babies by donating to the Foundation online or calling 03 6166 1319.

Dr Michelle Kilpatrick and  patient
Royal Hobart Hospital Research Foundation funded researcher Dr Michelle Kilpatrick speaks with her patient