NPEC Perinatal Mortality

Perinatal mortality is defined as the number of stillbirths and early neonatal deaths (death of a live born baby occurring within 7 completed days of birth) per 1,000 births (live births and stillbirths from 24 weeks gestation or weighing >500g).

Key Messages from the Perinatal Mortality in Ireland Annual Report 2016 include:

  • Perinatal Mortality Rate: 5.8 /1,000 births or 1 in 172 births
  • Low birthweight is associated with perinatal death, particularly stillbirths. This highlights the importance of close monitoring for fetal growth during pregnancy
  • Increased body mass index (BMI) and maternal age is associated with perinatal mortality
  • The main causes of perinatal death in Ireland in 2016 were:
  1. Stillbirth: Major congenital anomaly (31.2%), placental disease (28.0%), unexplained (15.2%) Early neonatal deaths
  2. Major congenital abnormality (54.8%), respiratory disorder secondary to prematurity (29%)

For further information on this audit, visit the NPEC website here or contact