Fact Guide & Useful Links
This section of the website contains definitions of the different types of pregnancy losses.
The links provided are for additional organisations that may provide useful general information on advocacy, health services, education, bereavement and pregnancy.
An ectopic pregnancy is any pregnancy implanted outside of the endometrial cavity.
First trimester loss
A loss within the first 12 completed weeks of pregnancy
Second trimester loss
A second trimester miscarriage may be defined as a pregnancy loss after the 12th and before the 24th completed week of pregnancy.
A child born weighing 500 grammes or more or having a gestational age of 24 weeks or more who shows no sign of life. (Irish Stillbirths Registration Act, 1994)
Fatal fetal anomaly / life limiting conditions
Fatal fetal anomalies /life-limiting conditions include diagnoses that are highly likely to lead to death in utero or in the
newborn period (28 days of life), although for some of these diagnoses, survival beyond 28 days has been reported.
Early Neonatal Death
Death of a live born baby occurring within 7 completed days of birth. Late neonatal death: Death of a live born baby occurring after the 7th day and within 28 completed days of birth. (NPEC, 2018)
Recurrent miscarriage is the loss of two or more consecutive pregnancies within the first-trimester.
Termination of Pregnancy
The Health (Regulation of Termination of Pregnancy) Act 2018 was signed into Irish law on 21st December 2018. There are several different circumstances under which termination of pregnancy can be legally performed.
- Section 12 allows termination of pregnancy to be carried out by medical practitioners up to 12 weeks gestation, once a minimum of three days has elapsed from the date ofcertification. The vast majority of terminations occur under this section of the legislation.
- Section 11 allows termination of pregnancy to be carried out in the setting of a fatal fetal anomaly and/or life limiting conditions.
- Sections 9 and 10 allow termination of pregnancy to be carried out in the setting of a risk to life or health of the pregnant person.
- Termination of pregnancy can be medical or surgical, and can occur in primary (medical only) and secondary care settings
All Ireland Institute of Hospice and Palliative Care
Anew: Support for pregnant women and mothers experiencing homelessness
Antenatal Results and Choices (ARC UK)
Association for Improvement of Maternity Services Ireland
BPAS (British Pregnancy AdvisoryServices)
Department of Health – Women’s Health Taskforce
EUROCAT – European Surveillance of Congenital Anomalies
HIQA National Care Experience Programme
HSE Clincal Guidelines
HSE Employee Assistance Programme (support for healthcare professionals)
Health Service Executive
HSE Health Promotion
IHF Bereavement Support Line
Institute of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists of the Royal College of Physicians Ireland
Irish Coroners Service
Irish Multiple Births Association
Irish Medical Council
Irish Neonatal Health Alliance
Irish Patients Association
MBRRACE-UK: Mothers and Babies: Reducing Risk through Audits and Confidential Enquiries across the UK
Miscarriage Association UK
My Child-HSE Pregnancy & Parenthood advice
National Perinatal Epidemiology Centre Ireland
NISIG-National Infertility Support and Information Group
Nursing and Midwifery Board of
Patient Advocacy Service
Royal College of Physicians Ireland
RCPI National Clinical Guidelines in Obstetrics and Gynaecology
Royal College of Physicians Ireland Institute of Obstetricians & Gynaecologists
Star Legacy Stillbirth Foundation
Northern Ireland (SANDS NI)
Stillbirth And Neonatal Death Society UK (SANDS UK)
Together for short lives
Tusla-Child & Family Agency
Your Sexual Health (HSE)
British Association of Perinatal Medicine
British Maternal and Fetal Medicine Society
International Stillbirth Alliance
International Society for the Study and Prevention of Perinatal and Infant Death
International Society for Prenatal Diagnosis