A special service to honour the lives of Western Australian babies lost during pregnancy or birth was held today at King Edward Memorial Hospital.
The annual Pregnancy and Infant Loss Remembrance Day Service coincides this year with the 30th anniversary of the KEMH Memorial Rose Garden.
The garden is a special place where the ashes of those who were stillborn before 28 weeks’ gestation are interred. It was established in 1989 in conjunction with the Matilda Bay Rotary Club to help grieving families.
Specialist teams that include obstetricians, midwives, social workers and psychologists as well as State-wide services also provide support and care for women and their families if they suffer a loss during pregnancy or birth.
Health Minister Roger Cook also announced today that work is underway to preserve the Memorial Rose Garden and Harvey House.
The Department of Health is working with LandCorp to engage consultants to develop a Conservation Management Plan for the heritage-listed Harvey House.
The plan would help determine the future needs for the building and surrounds.
LandCorp is also investigating options to subdivide the site from the main King Edward Memorial Hospital, which will be closed after a new maternity hospital at the Queen Elizabeth II hospital campus is ready.
As stated by Health Minister Roger Cook:
“The loss of a little one during pregnancy or birth is a terrible event but I hope that services such as the one today offer some comfort for those that have suffered such a loss.
“Today’s service gave us the opportunity to pay our respects to the families and loved ones who have gone through this very sad time in their lives and to give them the opportunity to remember those who they lost.
“The Memorial Rose Garden is a very special place that provides a place of sanctuary and remembrance, and we are committed to preserving the garden and the Harvey House precinct.
“A Conservation Management Plan will be developed that will help determine what is needed now and into the future so that Harvey House and the garden remain with us for generations to come.”