The Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust

Research and Innovation

800 mums from across Leeds join the Born and Bred in Leeds maternity research study in just nine months

17 March 2023

The Born and Bred in (BaBi) Leeds team are celebrating this Mother’s Day, in the first year that the team have been part of the BaBi network. Since joining the network in July 2022, the Leeds team have recruited over 800 mothers’ and babies to be part of this nationwide research project, hitting their 12 month recruitment target in just 9 months.

BaBi is a network of birth cohort studies that are working together to link existing data across health, education, and social care to create a picture of families’ lives over time.  This means that, with consent from pregnant women, routine data recorded by the services they access themselves or for their babies is joined together anonymously. 

Dr Nigel Simpson, Consultant Obstetrician and Gynaecologist at Leeds Teaching Hospitals NHS Trust said: “I’m delighted that the BaBi project in Leeds is growing from strength-to-strength and that so many women and families have chosen to be part of this research. This important national programme will support child health services for new mums and families for years’ to come.”

The BaBi network will help to create a bigger picture of local people’s health, for research purposes. By looking for patterns in the data, the research can give valuable insights into what works well and what can be made better, helping us to improve our services for the future.

Routine recorded data includes lots of different things, such as, blood pressure measurements from when a woman sees her midwife, or the details of baby’s height and weight recorded by health visitors.

The concept began in Bradford, where it is part of the world-leading Born in Bradford research programme. Now, in an exciting venture to help more local people in different locations, three new areas in Yorkshire have joined the study as local research sites. Doncaster, Leeds and Wakefield are all now part of the BaBi family, with Hull in set up also.  Nationally, a site in East London is already established with another in Nottingham also in set up.