World Prematurity Day

17 November 2013 | GLOBAL


World Prematurity Day, November 17 2013, is a global movement to raise awareness about prematurity highlighting the burden of preterm birth, informing on simple, proven cost-effective solutions, and envoking compassion for families who have experienced preterm birth.

This year marks the third World Prematurity Day and activities will also link to Every Newborn, a global effort to improve newborn health and reduce maternal and child mortality. The Every Newborn action plan will be launched in May 2014 with the support of more than 50 organizations, led by UNICEF and WHO. The plan will enable policy makers and all stakeholders to take action to accelerate national plans to achieve clear results for newborn survival, enhancing the achievement of wider goals for women’s and children’s health.

Hundreds of associations, societies, professionals, private sector organizations and individuals will come together to mark World Prematurity Day on 17 November 2012 with events and activities around the globe, bringing attention to the global challenge of premature birth.

Some of the global discussions taking place include:

Geneva, Switzerland

A side event on the Every Newborn Action plan will be held in Geneva on 15 November from 12:30pm – 14.00pm. Co-hosted by the South African Permanent Mission and United Kingdom Permanent Mission, this event will focus discussion on the actions needed by all stakeholders to prevent and care for babies born too soon. It will provide an overview of the Every Newborn action plan, now under development for launch in May 2014 during the World Health Assembly, with the aim of building greater knowledge among the Geneva health, development and diplomatic community ahead of the dissemination of a draft document at the January 2014 WHO Executive Board in Geneva

New York, NY

A discussion on the prevention and care of preterm births will take place at the United Nations Headquarters on Friday, 15 November from 10:00am-11:30am. The event which is cohosted by the Permanent Mission of the Republic of Zambia to the United Nations and the US Agency for International Development (USAID) will present the data from Born Too Soon and link to the Every Newborn action plan and Every Woman Every Child. It will also provide an opportunity to learn more about cost effective solutions, new research, support for families and the Every Newborn action plan which launches in May 2014.

Washington, DC

A technical symposium will take place in Washington DC on Tuesday, 19 November from 9:00am-12:00pm cohosted by USAID/MCHIP, Save the Children and CORE Group. The symposium is designed to engage members of the RMNCH community to discuss strategies for strengthening country programs for the prevention of preterm birth and the care of babies born too soon. With presentations by high profile global newborn health experts, the group will discuss what the international community can do to improve the effective delivery of technical interventions.

You are invited to join the global movement to raise awareness about prematurity.

#EveryNewborn Twittter Chat

To commemorate World Prematurity Day, there will be a 24 hour Global Twitter Relay on November 15-16 using the hashtag #worldprematurityday. The Partnership for Maternal, Newborn and Child Health with Every Woman Every Child will be hosting an hour on Saturday, November 16 from 9-10am EST to promote the Every Newborn Action Plan with Mary Kinney @maryvkinney hosting the hour. We would love your participation during this time in particular, with questions and comments on the Every Newborn Action Plan, as well as throughout the day. We also encourage you to promote the chat through your other social media channels. Attached is a guide with hashtags, handles and weblinks.

Join the conversation

  • Use the #worldprematurityday to join the global conversation on Twitter;
  • Use the #WorldPrematurityDay hashtag and join the global twitter relay on 15 and 16 November hosted by partners in different cities to have your questions answered by preterm birth experts;
  • Use the #B2Soon hashtag and participate in the Born Too Soon and WPD 2013 Twitter chat hosted by Reproductive Health Twitter
  • “Like” World Prematurity Day on Facebook, where you can put a face on the problem of premature birth by posting a photo and story to an interactive map connecting people around the world.