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About Our Study

The QPrem Study

We sincerely appreciate your consideration during this difficult time following the birth of your premature baby.

At Hamad Medical Corporation we have had a very active research program for many years, to help make our care the best that it can be. In particular, we have been studying the development of babies who are born very early. We routinely follow up on all babies from our Neonatal Intensive Care Unit for at least two years, to ensure that their development is progressing well and to arrange assistance if it is required. This is part of our normal service. In this project we are studying how the progress of your baby after birth is related to how your baby grows up after he/she has gone home. We would be very grateful for your help with this research study.

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Why is the Study Important?

We know that babies who are born prematurely (more than 3 weeks early) can develop perfectly normally. But for a portion of these babies, this development is slow and extra help may be needed for some babies to develop as well as possible. Our aim is to learn more about which aspects of a baby’s early development are important so that we can improve our treatments.

With our partners in the UK, we are working hard to try to develop programs to improve these outcomes. Our goal is to give all premature babies the best possible start. This is the first study of its kind in Qatar. It will provide very important information to tell us how our services are developing in comparison to other

What Are We Doing?

This research project will set the foundations for a longitudinal study of the effects of prematurity over a baby’s lifespan. We will compare the progress of children born both prematurely and those born at full term (37-42 weeks).

This study will provide important information to support healthcare planning for premature babies and ultimately educational planning. The information we collect during this research project will help to advance our understanding of factors that affect health and development after preterm birth. It will also add new knowledge about health in the long term and enable us to deliver the safest, most effective and most compassionate care to each and every one of our patients.

What Does it Mean for You and Your Baby?

With your permission, we will collect information from your baby’s medical records and, in a short interview, ask you some questions about your pregnancy. After going home we will ask you to attend two special assessments at about 12 and 24 months of age in order to resume the research and evaluate the developmental process of your child.

After you have spoken to one of the research team and have read this leaflet, we will ask you to read and complete a consent form. The person talking to you about this project will also need to sign the consent form to confirm that they have spoken to you. Please do not sign the form until you have a clear and full understanding of what this research project entails and are happy to participate in it. We will also discuss with you the timelines for all aspects of the research and adjust them to suit you and your baby. We will use all of this information to understand how babies who are born prematurely grow and develop.

These findings will also help us to explain how prematurity affects your baby and when we should communicate with you in the future. We will also publish the results of our studies in international medical journals so we can help and inform other people researching this important area.