Project HATCH - Staying Healthy AfTer Childbirth

A cross-national study to support smoking abstinence and inter-related cancer-prevention behaviours among postpartum women.

Project HATCH explores how women could be supported to have a healthy lifestyle after pregnancy.

The study seeks the views and experiences of postpartum women, and health professionals working with postpartum women, about how best to promote healthy behaviours following childbirth including not smoking, staying active, and maintaining a healthy diet for mums and babies.

We are conducting focus group discussions with women who gave birth within the last two years to better understand what has helped and hindered them in maintaining a healthy lifestyle since delivering their baby.

In addition, we are surveying health professionals including midwives, health visitors, GPs, lactation consultants, and children centre workers about what support is already available to postpartum women and what new support ideas might be feasible to deliver in existing healthcare or community settings.

Feedback from mums and health professionals will be used develop a support package to help postpartum women have a healthy lifestyle. A healthy lifestyle is important in helping prevent cancer. This study is funded by Cancer Research UK.

Please contact Dr Emma Ward (project researcher) for more information @ Norwich Medical School

Tel: 01603 592304,  Email:

How can I get involved? How can I get involved?

Postnatal women

We want to talk to new mums (who have had a baby in the last two years) about how they can be supported to have a healthy lifestyle after pregnancy. We might discuss staying active, healthy diet for mums and babies, and stopping smoking (if relevant). We are especially interested to hear your views if you gave up smoking in pregnancy (you may or may not have gone back to smoking since). If you are interested in speaking to us please contact Emma at or call 01603 591734

Professionals working with postnatal women

If you are a community or healthcare professional working with postnatal women (e.g. GPs, midwives, health visitors, nurses, lactation consultants, breastfeeding counsellors, parenting charity workers and others), you are invited to participate in a brief survey (10-20 minutes) where you will be asked your opinions on how we might work together to be able to improve health behaviours in this important population.  To learn more about this survey and decide whether you want to participate, please click the link below:

Professional survey click here


Project HATCH is a cross-national research study and is being conducted in the UK, led by the University of East Anglia, and in the USA, led by the University of Vermont.

UEA Research Team Members:

Dr Caitlin Notley

Dr Emma Ward

Wider Research Team Members:

Dr Allison Kurti - University of Vermont (USA)

Dr Claire Adams Spears - Georgia State University (USA)

Dr Fiona Mitchell - University of Strathclyde (UK)

Dr Angelos Kassianos - University College London (UK) 

Dr Jamie Payton - Temple University (USA)

Dr Dian Nostikasari - Rice University (USA)


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