The special journey of more than 550 WA mothers and babies has been celebrated as part of the unveiling of the KEMH Honour Wall.
The special journey of more than 550 Western Australian mothers and babies has been celebrated as part of the unveiling of the King Edward Memorial Hospital (KEMH) Honour Wall as a precursor to World Prematurity Day (17 November).
Unveiled by Her Excellency, the Honourable Kerry Sanderson AC, Governor of Western Australia and Patron of the Women and Infants Research Foundation (WIRF), the KEMH Honour Wall recognises the mothers and babies that have helped shape the ‘King Eddies’ story.
Executive Director-WIRF, Professor John Newnham said the Honour Wall was a unique project which would support research to prevent preterm birth.
“The Honour Wall, a key part of the Hospital’s Centenary celebrations, recognises King Eddies’ 100 years of delivering health care to the women, babies and families of Western Australia,” Professor Newnham said.
“All women whose babies were born or treated at KEMH have been invited to be a lasting part of the Hospital’s centenary celebration through this project.”
Prof Newnham said proceeds from the Honour Wall will be used to support research to prevent preterm birth; the single, largest cause of death and disability in children under five years of age in the developed world.
“In WA alone, more than 2900 babies are born premature each year. Premmie babies require a raft of life saving technology to survive then thrive. After several decades of targeted research, we now have the knowledge to safely prevent preterm birth for many women and their pregnancies,” Prof Newnham said.
“Our world-first WA Preterm Birth Prevention Initiative (The Whole Nine Months) aims to reduce the rate of premature births in the State by 35 per cent over the next five years.”
Honour Wall mums were able to choose from gold and silver butterflies, colourful bunting flags, or the digital Honour Wall. Honour Wall elements are still available for purchase and will be posted to the wall in subsequent phases of construction.
World Prematurity Day calls attention to the special issues facing infants born prematurely (born earlier than 37 weeks), celebrates the development and growth of older babies and children who were born prematurely, and is a great day to support members of your community who work with newborns or premature infants, or are parents adjusting with a prematurely born infant.
For more information about the KEMH Honour Wall visit: www.wirf.com.au
For more information about The Whole Nine Months visit www.thewholeninemonths.com.au
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