Blog, news, and updates

WRISK Conversations… with Caitlin Dean, Pregnancy Sickness Support

The greatest improvement for women with HG would be if healthcare professionals would start to talk not just about the hypothetical risks of medications for this condition, but if they were to also address the benefits of medication and the risks of not using a medication when you have a very serious medical condition in pregnancy.


When the COVID-19 pandemic was declared back in March of 2020, we anticipated that those who were pregnant or planning for a baby were going to be disproportionately impacted. Our report, based on an online survey, explores users’ experiences and the emotional consequences of COVID-19 risk messaging and ‘socially-distanced’ maternity care.

The return of the postnatal 6 week check

Dr Stephanie de Giorgio is a GP and the Perinatal Mental Health Lead for Kent and Medway. She is also the GP Champion Programme Lead for NHSE. In this blog to mark Maternal Mental Health Awareness Week 2020, she reflects on the enormous efforts taken to raise awareness of perinatal mental illness and get the 6 week maternal postnatal check back into GP contracts- a huge victory for women and those that care for them.

Pregnancy and Risk: A social work perspective

The WRISK Project regularly asks contributors to share their perspectives on a range of issues related to risk communication in pregnancy to further understanding of the challenges faced by scientists, clinicians, policy makers, and of course women themselves...

Risk and disability: the human rights view

We all know that the words ‘risk’ and ‘pregnancy’ seem to go hand in hand. We know too that women are entitled to personalised discussions about the risks and benefits that are material to them to enable them to make choices about their care. But what about those situations where the risk information might be – or is perceived as being – more complex?

Rebecca Brione is Research and Partnerships Officer at Birthrights. She oversees Birthrights’ research programme, with a focus on multiple disadvantage, mental capacity and disability.  Outside of her work for Birthrights, Rebecca has a particular interest in reproductive justice and autonomy. 

My HG Story

The WRISK project regularly asks contributors to share their perspectives on a range of issues related to risk communication in pregnancy to further understanding of the challenges faced by scientists, clinicians, policy makers, and of course women themselves when...

Link between maternal obesity and childhood leukaemia – a cause for alarm?

A study published last week in the American Journal of Epidemiology reported that children born to obese mothers were 57% more likely to develop leukaemia before the age of 14. The study was picked up by the medical and mainstream press – with the Daily Mail take here a fair representation of the general coverage.

The coverage highlights three common issues concerning reporting of research relating to risk in pregnancy, each of which is being considered as part of the WRISK research. 

If you are a bigger Mum or Mum-to-Be who is looking for information and support, please get in touch with Big Birthas. 

WRISK comment on 2019 NMPA Organisational Report

Today marks the release of the second organisational report of the National Maternity and Perinatal Audit (NMPA). The report maps service provision as of January 2019 across England, Scotland, and Wales, including an overview of maternity and neonatal care settings, the availability of services, staffing levels, and how these have changed since the last audit in 2017.

The WRISK Project: we want to hear from you

WRISK is launching a survey which is open to all women who have been pregnant in the last five years regardless of their experiences of pregnancy or how a pregnancy may have ended. The survey asks about risk-related topics, how women feel about advice they have received, and any areas that could do with greater attention or better communication. We are particularly interested in hearing from women whose voices are often not heard- this may include BAME women, women in receipt of welfare benefits, and both younger and older women.

“Someone to talk to who understands”: How do we support women with long-term health conditions with decisions about starting a family?

In our latest piece, Rhiannon Phillips discusses some of the challenges that women living with long-term health conditions sometimes face when thinking about starting a family. Rhiannon is a Health Psychologist based at the PRIME Centre Wales, Cardiff University. Her research focuses on improving the health and well-being of women of reproductive age and children, using a variety of approaches that aim to build skills, knowledge, and confidence. 

Community midwifery: communicating risk from the front line

In this blog, Nikki Lacey takes us to the front line of community midwifery and shares the art of respectfully communicating risk whilst under immense time pressure. Nikki trained as a nurse, qualifying as a midwife in 2000 and later undertaking a Masters degree. She currently works in the Vale Parenting Service as a Specialist Midwife for the under 19’s in the Vale of Glamorgan, Wales.

Does oral sex prevent miscarriage?

In the latest WRISK guest blog, Katy Lindemann explores a controversial new study from researchers at the University of Leiden, published in the Journal of Reproductive Immunology. Katy is writer-in-residence at @FertilityFest and the founder of the Uber Barrens Club. She is currently writing a book about the reality of infertility and pregnancy loss, and tweets at @uberbarrensclub.

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