Creating evidence-based knowledge and support for women before and during pregnancy, to improve the health of women and the next generation.

The Centre of Research Excellence in Health in Preconception and Pregnancy (CRE HiPP) is an innovative, passionate, multi-disciplinary team of researchers, clinicians, students and consumers determined to refine and implement health promotion, lifestyle improvement and obesity prevention for women planning pregnancy, during pregnancy and into early parenthood.

More than half of Australian women will enter pregnancy with overweight or obesity, including Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women and women from culturally and linguistically diverse backgrounds.

A higher body mass index (BMI) before pregnancy (preconception) independently increases the risk of pregnancy complications, such as gestational diabetes, preeclampsia, caesarean section birth, and large-for-gestational-age infants, with maternal weight at conception also a key determinant of childhood obesity. In turn, children born to mothers living with obesity are twice as likely to be living with obesity themselves as children, through to adolescence and adulthood.

Many women (between 40-60 per cent) will also gain too much weight during pregnancy. The US Institute of Medicine pregnancy weight gain recommendations1 outlines the amount of weight women should aim to gain based on their pre-pregnancy BMI – their BMI at the time they conceive. Every kilogram a woman gains above these recommendations increase her risk of adverse maternal and foetal outcomes by around 10 per cent.

With these statistics in mind, the CRE in Health in Preconception and Pregnancy will:

1 Institute of Medicine; National Research Council. Weight Gain During Pregnancy: Re-examining the Guidelines – Report Brief; Institute of Medicine: Washington (DC), USA, 2009 https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK32801/table/ch7.t3/?report=objectonly

Meet our Investigators

Professor Helen Skouteris

Director of CRE HiPP
Monash Warwick Professor of Health and Social Care Improvement and Implementation Science, Head of Health and Social Care Unit, School of Public Health, Monash University.

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Professor Helena Teede

NHMRC MRFF Practitioner Fellow, Director of Monash Centre for Health Research and Implementation (MCHRI), Executive Director of Monash Partners Academic Health Sciences Centre, Endocrinologist Monash Health, School of Public Health, Monash University.

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Associate Professor Jacqueline Boyle

NHMRC Career Development Fellow, Obstetrician and Gynaecologist Monash Health, Deputy Director of MCHRI, School of Public Health, Monash University, Honorary appointment at the Menzies School of Health Research, Darwin

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Associate Professor Lisa Moran

NHF Future Fellow, Head of Healthy Lifestyles Program at Monash Health, Dietitian, MCHRI, School of Public Health, Monash University

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Professor Shakila Thangaratinam

Professor of Maternal and Perinatal Health, Obstetrician, University of Birmingham

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Professor Andrew Hills

Associate Dean, Global, Professor of Sports and Exercise Science, University of Tasmania

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Professor Alison Venn

Director of Menzies Institute for Medical Research, Professor of Endocrinology, University of Tasmania

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Professor Brian Jack

Medical Physician, Chair of the Department of Family Medicine, School of Medicine and Boston Medical Center, Boston University

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Professor Robert Norman

Reproductive Endocrinologist and Obstetrician Gynaecologist, Founder of Robinsons Research Institute, SA, Director fertilitySA, Professor of Reproductive and Periconceptual Medicine, University of Adelaide

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Associate Professor Zanfina Ademi

Epidemiologist and Health Economist, Monash University

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Professor Leonie Callaway

Chair of CRE HiPP Advisory Committee
Obstetrics, University of Queensland, Royal Brisbane and Women’s Hospital

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Professor Cate Nagle

Midwifery, James Cook University, Townsville Hospital and Health Service

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Professor James Dunbar

Primary Care, Deakin University

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Professor Judith Stephenson

Preconception Care, University College London

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Professor Louise Maple Brown

Endocrinology, Indigenous women’s health, Menzies School of Health Research, Darwin

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Dr Carina Cotaru

Obstetrician Gynaecologist, Royal Darwin Hospital Top End Health Service

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Professor Sandra Eades

Dean and Head of Curtin Medical School, Curtin University

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Professor Andrew Wilson

Director, The Australian Prevention Partnership Centre

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Professor Louise Baur

Paediatrics, University of Sydney, The Children’s Hospital, Westmead, Sydney

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Professor Roger Hart

Fertility specialist, The University of Western Australia, King Edward Memorial Hospital, Director of Fertility Specialists of Western Australia

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Our Partners

CRE HiPP is proud to partner with a number of state, national and international bodies to achieve its goals. We are also a member of the Collaboration for Enhanced Research Impact (CERI), a joint initiative to enhance the profile and impact of chronic disease prevention in Australia. Find out more about CERI. CRE HiPP thanks the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) for its support, enabling our researchers to lead the way in preconception and pregnancy lifestyle health.