‘Find and Follow’: scoping the data capture, reporting and follow-up of (i) pregnancies complicated by congenital abnormalities, (ii) health and development among ‘high risk’ newborns

Project Details

During pregnancy, there is no standardised approach to identifying and following up infants after a prenatal diagnosis of congenital abnormality. After birth, there is no standardised approach to identifying and following up high risk newborns.  Both groups are at risk of poor outcome, yet there remains a disconnect between this research knowledge and clinical practice.

We need to know what is currently happening with follow-up of ‘high risk’ pregnancies and ‘high risk’ newborns, many of whom will be cared for in MACH hospitals. This is key to capturing the unmet health needs of these at-risk groups, in order to offer targeted surveillance and care. This is the aim of ‘find and follow’.

Identifying current gaps in care will enable us to;

  • Develop a standardised approach to families with congenital abnormalities. This will optimise pregnancy care, and ensure seamless newborn follow-up;
  • Streamline current follow-up services for high risk newborns. Education of health services will result in more timely targeted interventions and optimise child outcomes.

The collaborating MACH partner organisations are Mercy Health, Murdoch Children’s Research Institute (MCRI), Northern Health, The Royal Children’s Hospital, The Royal Women’s Hospital, The University of Melbourne and Western Health.


  • Professor Susan Walker AO (CIA) Sheila Handbury Chair of Maternal Fetal Medicine, Head of Department O&G
  • Dr Catherine Connaughton Research Assistant
  • Associate Professor Joanne Said Research Clinician
  • Professor Jeanie Cheong Research Clinician


This research is funded by MRFF Rapid Applied Research Translation (RART) via the Melbourne Academic Centre for Health (MACH).

Research Group

School Research Themes

Child Health in Medicine, Women's Health, Infectious Diseases and Immunity

Key Contact

For further information about this research, please contact the research group leader.

Department / Centre

Obstetrics and Gynaecology

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