Preterm Birth Workshop

September 2-3, 2015
Toronto, Ontario

Overview and Objectives

IHDCYH hosted a Preterm Birth Workshop in Toronto on September 2 and 3, 2015 to stimulate strategic and innovative thinking around the development of a transformational initiative that would enhance the understanding of preterm birth and improve the outcomes of children born preterm, their mothers and their families. The ultimate goal was to position Canada as a global leader in the field of preterm birth.

The event, which brought together more than 60 researchers, clinicians, and other experts in preterm birth and related fields from universities, hospitals, professional societies, CIHR Institutes, and non-government organizations across the country, aimed to:

  • obtain input and advice on the development of an innovative strategy for preterm birth research in Canada;
  • cultivate strategic and transformational approaches to preterm birth research;
  • leverage promising practices from complementary fields and sectors;
  • identify the Canadian niche; and
  • prepare the community for innovative and strategic funding opportunities related to preterm birth.

The workshop featured a number of informative presentations and panel discussions—both by Canadian experts from a broad spectrum of backgrounds and by the founder of the Global Alliance to Prevent Prematurity and Stillbirth—that set the stage for small-group brainstorming sessions. During the sessions, participants engaged in lively and thoughtful discussions on Canadian strengths, gaps, and opportunities in preterm birth research, prioritized goals for the next 20 years, and identified the key partners and enablers needed to achieve them. Priorities identified during the workshop included: a need for new and innovative ideas in preterm birth research, improvements to care and patient outcomes, improvements to the perinatal health system, better data linkage and access, and a national strategy for preterm birth prevention.

A workshop report is available upon request.

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