Summary findings of the 2015 Annual Report
- There were 33,527 registrable births (livebirths and stillbirths) in 2015 to mothers resident in Wales at the time of birth (Figure 1)
- Data on stillbirths and infant mortality rates are presented in Table 1. Perinatal, stillbirth, neonatal, post neonatal and infant mortality rates in Wales have shown a slow downward trend since 2009. These rates include all gestations, birthweights, and lethal congenital anomalies, but exclude late terminations.
- The stillbirth rate in 2015 was 4.12 per 1,000 births (95% CI 3.49, 4.86). The rate has gone down this year after the slight increase in the rate of stillbirths observed last year (2014, 4.64 per 1,000 births (95%CI 3.97, 5.43)). The common maternity data set which is being developed and a confidential enquiry into stillbirths by an independent multi-disciplinary team could facilitate better identification and understanding of the modifiable factors preceding the stillbirth and sharing of lessons learned, that can lead to the development of recommendations for clinical practice.
- In order to report complete data we report post neonatal deaths and infant deaths for all livebirths in 2014. In 2014, post neonatal mortality rate was 0.86 per 1,000 livebirths – a decrease on the rate observed in 2013. The neonatal mortality rate for 2015 was 2.49 per 1,000 livebirths, a slight increase from 2014 when the rate was 2.26. Neonatal and post neonatal mortality rates remain higher in the most deprived quintile of the population compared with the least deprived quintile.
- The infant mortality rate in 2014 was 2.97 per 1,000 livebirths (95% CI 2.44, 3.61) compared to 3.76 per 1,000 livebirths (95% CI 3.16, 4.47) in 2013.
- There was no significant difference in perinatal mortality rates for 2015 between North Wales, Mid and West Wales, and South East Wales (Table A13). Annual stillbirth and infant mortality rates for the period 2005-2014 by Health Boards, and individual hospitals are available from previous AWPS reports which can be found at http://awpsonline.uk.
- Autopsies are often essential for understanding underlying causes of death. The relatively low rate of autopsy uptake continues to be of concern.