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Midwifery Challenges - CPD Conference

  • : Adelaide SA 5000

Modern midwifery is increasingly demanding. Rapid social changes and new evidence are affecting the way that midwives practice. Attend this program to explore some of these challenges. Includes:

  • High risk pregnancies
  • Substance abuse and pregnancy
  • The legal status of unborn child
  • Maternal depression and medicines
  • Neonatal abstinence syndrome
  • Self care for midwives
  • The booming breast milk market and much, much more...

 Print Schedule

Day One



Jayne Lehmann

Gestational Diabetes - 2017 Update

According to Diabetes Australia, between 3 - 8% of pregnant women will develop gestational diabetes and this figure is as high as 15% for women from specific ethnicities. This session will bring you up to speed on a range of issues relating to gestational diabetes. Includes:

  • Update on current guidelines on screening, diagnosis and management of GD
  • What are appropriate, evidence-based dietary and exercise changes to improve blood glucose levels?
  • How may this affect the overall health of the baby at delivery and in later life?
  • What long-term advice should be given to these women?


Margi Moncrieff

Preventing Surgical Site Infections Post Caesarean Sections

Surgical site infections (SSI’s) are common and costly health care associated infections. Patient morbidity, mortality and length of stay in hospital are all affected by SSIs. This session looks at SSI prevention in women following caesarean sections and includes:

  • Assessment of a c-section suture line - what do we look for?
  • What are the signs that a wound might be infected?
  • How to select the most appropriate goals of care for a c-section wound infection
  • Guidelines for the management of c-section surgical wounds post-operatively



Jane Warland

Talking and Listening in Order to Prevent

Still birth is an unfortunate event and yet a sad reality for 6 Australian families every day. It is integral that midwives are equipped with the knowledge to help prevent stillbirths and understand the importance of discussing the often taboo subject to increase awareness that will better improve outcomes for families. This session will help break the silence, topics include:

  • How do we improve awareness of still birth?
  • How do we break the silence and discuss still birth without raising anxiety or causing undue stress?
  • Why is listening to the mother important in prevention, e.g. use of language?
  • What are the risk factors?


Jane Warland

When the Baby Dies...

The death of a baby is always a tragic event and grief is a normal reaction to loss. The depth and duration of the experience is different for everyone but can have considerable psychological effects. Research has indicated the positive benefits of bereavement support immediately after a baby dies. This session aims to provide you with an opportunity to discuss some of your experiences and identify key support mechanisms you can use when faced with the death of a baby during pregnancy, birth or as a neonate.



Jane Warland

Pregnancy After a Loss

It is important for midwives to have a detailed history of the woman they are caring for. Some women may have had previous physical or emotional trauma that may cause them to feel highly anxious and worried for their current pregnancy. It is the role of the midwife to support these women to help them understand and cope with their very natural anxiety during their next pregnancy as this will promote physical and emotional stability as well as maternal infant attachment. This session will discuss:

  • What emotional support is needed of a woman who has previously had a perinatal loss or miscarriage?
  • What practical and emotional support is needed for a woman who has had years of trouble conceiving?
  • How do midwives need to stay in touch with their pregnant women and support them both physically and emotionally?


Elizabeth Newnham and Megan Cooper

The Challenge of Gaining Informed Consent

Informed consent is the process by which a health care provider discloses the appropriate information regarding the risks of a treatment. Consent should be unbiased and evidence based. Two academics who completed research on the current policy of informed consent within a maternity setting discovered the interesting use of language and some misleading facts. This session will discuss their findings and the effects on a woman’s autonomy.



Dr Linda Starr

The Legal Status of the Unborn Child

There is much debate about the viability, health, legal and ethical status of unborn children. Midwives may be confronted with challenging clinical scenarios regarding the unborn child that pose both ethical and legal dilemmas. This session will provide you with a factual guide on how to address some of these dilemmas including:

  • Definition of life and rights of the unborn child
  • Should a midwife intervene if a mother is drinking to excess during pregnancy?
  • Can a mother be sued for damage to her foetus caused by maternal neglect?


Day Two



Professor Ian Olver

‘Designer Babies’ - Is Sex Selection Ethical?

A ‘designer baby’ refers to a baby whose genetic makeup has been selected. This may be to eradicate some genes or to ensure another gene is present. The development of scientifically altering a baby's genetics is a controversial issue. Is this medical resource being abused by those wanting to choose the sex of their baby? This session will provide an opportunity to look at both sides of the arguments surrounding this topical issue. Includes:

  • What are the main sides of this argument?
  • What is the slippery slope argument?
  • When should boundaries be drawn in regards to family balancing?
  • What is occurring internationally and how does this compare to what we are currently doing in Australia?


Senior Medicines Information Pharmacist, Obstetric and Paediatric Medicines Information Service, Women’s and Children’s Hospital

Maternal Depression and Medications

Maternal depression can have a harmful, enduring impact on an infant and of course affect a mother, her partner and family. A careful and balanced assessment must consider the benefits and consequences of untreated depression against potential foetal or child risks. This session will include:

  • What is the impact of maternal depression?
  • Basic pharmacotherapy reviews of common antidepressant and anti-anxiety medications
  • Which of these medicines are safe during pregnancy
  • What about during breastfeeding?
  • If there is a potential harm to the baby, when does the mother’s mental health override this?



Karyn Smith

Drugs, Alcohol and Motherhood

Mothers who are currently or have previously used alcohol, tobacco and other drugs during pregnancy often report negative experiences when receiving care from a healthcare facility. When a woman who has an addiction is viewed in a judgemental manner, the effects can be very detrimental, resulting in rejection of the care and support offered. This can create a distance between the midwife and mother throughout the pregnancy, having terrible ramifications. It is important as caregivers to deliver honest, open and non-judgemental care, improving outcomes for these mothers. This open and honest session will challenge you to consider and discuss the following:

  • Are we actually providing non-judgemental care?
  • How do we support women with lifestyles that involve an addiction to tobacco, alcohol and cannabis?
  • Finding the time to provide practical harm minimisation education to women
  • Statewide services that are useful with post-natal discharge planning


Karyn Smith

Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome - Assessment and Treatment

It is vital that midwives are aware of the importance of assessing and managing a neonate who is withdrawing from illicit substances as a result of maternal use. If a baby is withdrawing, neonatal abstinence syndrome may develop and the ability to correctly asses these babies is imperative. Topics include:

  • Signs and symptoms of NAS
  • Withdrawal period and average length of recovery
  • How to complete NAS scoring and why this is needed
  • Treatment of NAS affected babies



Heather Harris

Back to Basics - How to Teach Breastfeeding

As midwives, there is much to understand and know when supporting a mother who is breastfeeding her baby. In the twenty-first century there are many differing opinions and advice may change from midwife to midwife. This session will highlight the importance of understanding the basics of breastfeeding, why it is imperative that the correct techniques are being taught and how a mother's needs can be simply met by healthcare providers. Topics include:

  • What are the basics of breastfeeding?
  • What is ‘SYPNCY’ and how should you apply this to enhancing breast-feeding?
  • What are practical tips to help a midwife support a mother through the learning-to-breastfeed stage?


Heather Harris

Not Another Lactation Lecture!

Over time the mantra of ‘breast is best' has evolved, but as midwives, do we take into account the struggles that some women may face in pursuit of this goal? What do midwives need in order to meet early challenges, particularly in the hospital setting? Some mothers describe being tormented by the pressures to breast-feed. This idea that 'breast is best' circulates within parenting groups and maternity units and can ignite feelings of anxiety in mothers who are finding breast-feeding traumatic. Modern mothers face the often competing pressures of desiring they give their baby the very best nutritional start whilst also attempting to meet the clinical feeding requirements demanded by hospital protocols. This can result in significant stresses. This session will discuss the midwife’s role in supporting a mother who is struggling to breast-feed and:

  • 'Breast is best' should be replaced with 'potential risks of no breast-milk feeding'
  • If breast is really best how can we help mitigate the early maternal emotional stress so common amongst new mothers?
  • What effect does conflicting advice have on mothers, staff and breast-feeding success?
  • Developing supportive and non-judgmental skills for the mother who 'cannot' breast-feed or who is experiencing undersupply
  • How to effectively and quickly assess pelvic floor function
  • How can we better educate and support mothers who may need to make different choices?



Heather Harris

Liquid Gold? - The Booming Breast-Milk Market

In today's world of technology the ability to access donated breast-milk is becoming increasingly common. There are now websites committed to buying, selling and donating breast-milk. How might this type of transaction work in the real world of midwifery? Is this a positive change to be encouraged or is there room for potential error? This final session will discuss the growth of the breast-milk market that isn’t always traditional. Includes:

  • Is there a screening process to donate breast-milk?
  • Are there ethical considerations we need to be mindful of?
  • Is this something we should be supporting and promoting within Australia?
  • Historically, breast-feeding by someone other than the mother has been common; only since the twentieth century has formula-feeding been 'safe' enough to be used widely. What has caused many to reject formula in favour of donated human milk?
  • What is the role of Milk Banks?


The Goal Need for Program

In recent years birthing has increased in Australia. It is inevitable that there are gaps in the knowledge of many midwives in relation to latest research and the emerging issues that face them in the current practice setting. The context in which midwives practice is increasingly complex and making demands on the ever-expanding scope of practice. The link between education and the provision of quality care to mothers and their babies is indisputable. A broad range of education relating to contemporary midwifery practice will assist in closing gaps in knowledge and practice.

Purpose of Program

This conference provides a broad range of education relevant to midwifery practice that will enhance the provision of quality care to mothers and babies.

Your learning outcomes:

Apply evidence-based knowledge about several clinical aspects of midwifery care including breastfeeding which will improve the health and safety of mother and baby

Monitor the mother and baby during the perinatal period taking into consideration conditions that impact on best possible outcomes

Deliver compassionate care to a woman who has challenges associated with the perinatal experience

Provide midwifery care that is mindful of personal safety for yourself, a mother and her baby


Jane Warland

Jane Warland

Jane is a midwife and bereaved parent. Jane's first pregnancy ended in miscarriage, her fifth in the stillbirth of her ... Read More

Jayne Lehmann

Jayne Lehmann

Jayne Lehmann is a clinician, educator, consultant, blogger, author and researcher whose diabetes management and education skills are nationally recognised. ... Read More

Elizabeth Newnham

Elizabeth Newnham

Liz Newnham is a Midwife academic whose research interest centres on keeping birth normal. Broadly, she is interested in cultural ... Read More

Megan Cooper

Megan Cooper

Dr Megan Cooper is a direct entry midwife, mother of 5 and a Lecturer in Midwifery at the University of ... Read More

Linda Starr

Linda Starr

Dr Linda Starr is a general and psychiatric qualified Nurse, Lawyer and Associate Professor in the School of Nursing and ... Read More

Karyn Smith

Karyn Smith

Karyn Smith is an Outreach Clinical Midwife Consultant at the Sunshine Hospital providing collaborative midwifery care to vulnerable families in ... Read More

Heather Harris

Heather Harris

Heather Harris (BN Deakin, MMid LaTrobe) first qualified as a midwife in 1970 and has worked in all areas of ... Read More

Ian Olver

Ian Olver

Ian Olver AM is a medical oncologist, bioethicist and researcher. He is currently Professor of Translational Cancer Research, Director, Sansom ... Read More

Senior Medicines Information Pharmacist, Obstetric and Paediatric Medicines Information Service, Women’s and Children’s Hospital

Senior Medicines Information Pharmacist, Obstetric and Paediatric Medicines Information Service, Women’s and Children’s Hospital

The Medicines Information Service provides advice to health professionals and the general public regarding the safe use of medicines during ... Read More

Margi Moncrieff

Margi Moncrieff

Margi Moncrieff has been working at Flinders Medical Centre in the area of chronic and acute wound management for 29 ... Read More

Midwifery Challenges - CPD Conference
Speciality Classification
Provider Type
12 hours 15 mins
Start Date
End Date
12 hours 15 mins
Price Details
$572.00 (two days)
Adelaide SA 5000
West Lakes The Lakes Resort Hotel Adelaide, 141 Brebner Drive
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