Babies Born Better (B3)

Babies Born Better is a long-term project examining the views and experiences of women who have given birth in the last five years. The aim of the Babies Born Better project is to become a major resource for the improvement of maternal and childbirth care around the world. By finding out what works, for who and in what circumstances, the project data will provide insight into best practice during birth.

The website is a portal to the Babies Born Better survey, a multi language survey that is available world wide. Along with access to the survey, the website will present findings, publications and details of researchers and their associated work with the survey data.

The survey came out of the work of the COST Action IS0907: Changing childbirth cultures and consequences. This was a 4 year EU funded networking project which involved over 120 participants from 26 countries. The Action’s aim was to advance scientific knowledge about ways of improving maternity care provision and outcomes for mothers, babies and families across Europe by understanding what works, for who, in what circumstances , and by identifying and learning from the best

One of the key underlying elements of the Action was the principle Salutogenesis. This approach supports a focus on the promotion of well-being for individuals and communities. In terms of maternity care, this means rejecting a focus on pathology and considering what factors promote positive outcomes. It supports an approach which seeks to explore which practices and approaches support good outcomes and positive experiences for mothers, babies and families and how maternity services can learn from these practices and philosophies. This underlying philosophy and an increasing awareness of the variety of women’s experiences  of birth and the range of childbirth cultures and practices across Europe led the Action to look for a way of investigating women’s experiences of birth. The Action wanted to identify and locate where women had positive birth experiences and received excellent care. Mapping these results would allow us to identify where good practice was happening and then learn from this best practice to support positive change. However, while our focus was on positive practice, we were also aware that the survey would highlight places and situations where women had poor experiences of maternity care.

Babies Born Better survey findings (Version 1)

The first version of the B3 survey was open to women in Europe from 2012-2015. During this time, the data was accessed by researchers, academics and activists from around the EU in order to improve maternity care in their respective regions.

Analysis of the data is currently  being carried out by country coordinators and more information can be found on th country pages.

A paper on an overview of the findings of the  B3 survey is currently being written by members of the steering committee.

A presentation of the preliminary findings from the UK, Portugal, Spain and Croatia was presented at the Bergen COST meeting in March 2016.

COST Action meeting – Bergen 2016

The Babies Born Better website is here.