Caroline O’Connor is pursuing a PhD in the area of improving and standardising the care of twin pregnancies with INFANT and NPEC at UCC and is funded by the Irish research council.

Caroline completed her BSc Midwifery in the UCC in 2010. After graduating she travelled to Essex in the UK where she worked as a Band 6 Midwife in one of the largest and busiest maternity units in the country. She returned home at the end of 2011 and began working as an agency midwife in various maternity hospitals around Ireland.

Caroline went on to work as a research associate with a medical diagnostics company in conjunction with University College Cork involved in the development of a blood test which can predict the risk that a woman will develop preeclampsia later in their pregnancy.

Caroline has completed a postgraduate diploma with UCC in Preparation for Birth and Parenthood and enjoys providing antenatal classes in her spare time.

Caroline’s planned thesis is titled: Multiple pregnancy: An investigation of the risk factors and outcomes in the ROI (The MILESTONE study)

The objectives of the study are:

  1. Examine the current maternity care provided for the antenatal management of dichorionic diamniotic (DCDA) twin pregnancies, through the identification, appraisal and review of national and international clinical practice guidelines.
  2. Identify the maternal and care-related risk factors associated with perinatal mortality and explore perinatal mortality within the twin population in the ROI.
  3. Identify neonatal outcomes of very low birth weight twin pregnancies in the ROI.
  4. Identify the specific service needs of women/couples, to inform future developments and help improve the quality of care within the maternity services.
  5. National service evaluation within the ROI on the provision of antenatal care to DCDA twin pregnancies and establish if the care provided is in line with national and international recommendations.
  6. Contribute to the development of a DCDA twin pregnancy clinical practice guideline.

Caroline really wants to contribute to improving and standardising the care of twin pregnancies and especially improving the experience of the parents using the services.

Caroline is conducting this research with the Pregnancy Loss Research Group based at INFANT and the NPEC. Her supervisors are Professor Keelin O’Donoghue (INFANT),  and Dr Sara Leitao (NPEC).