POPPY: Parents of Premature babies Project - Your needs


POPPY is a three-year research project to identify effective interventions for communication, information and support for parents of a premature baby.

For most parents, a premature birth can be distressing and overwhelming. They see their newborn undergoing medical treatments and being cared for by others. Parents may feel unprepared, and learning to care for their baby is not always easy.

Good communication with healthcare professionals, including clear information and emotional support, is crucial. However, most research focuses on the baby's care and treatment, rather than how their parents feel or copy.

POPPY began in January 2006 and summary results of the research are now available. It includes a review of studies on parents' experiences and services, a neonatal unit survey and interviews with parents from a range of social groups.

The National Childbirth Trust (NCT) and Bliss- the premature baby charity will develop support materials for parents, and good practice guidance and training programmes for healthcare workers.

Collaborating organisations

The collaborative project, funded by the Big Lottery Fund, includes the following organisations:

  • NCT (formerly known as the National Childbirth Trust)
    NCT is the leading charity for pregnancy, birth and parenting in the UK. Every year we support thousands of people through this incredible life-changing experience, offering relevant information, reassurance and mutual support.

  • Bliss – the premature baby charity
    Some newborn babies need a little extra special care. Bliss is dedicated to ensuring that more babies survive, have the best possible quality of life and that their parents and families get the support they need.
  • Research Insitute, School of Health & Social Studies, University of Warwick
    Research Institute (RCNRI) was formerly the research team at the Royal College of Nursing Institute from 1996-2007.  When the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) wished to develop a strategic alliance with another Higher Education Institute to enhance its ability to deliver high quality research, the University of Warwick was successful in its bid to be the RCN’s strategic alliance partner for research.  The RCNRI has been a research centre within the School of Health & Social Studies at the University of Warwick since 1st August 2007.

  • National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit
    The National Perinatal Epidemiology Unit (NPEU) is a research unit set up in 1978 by the Department of Health. Although its remit covers England and Wales, the Unit's research and collaborative links are worldwide and its work has influenced national and international policy.

We would like to thank the Big Lottery Fund for their generous support for POPPY.