Maternal and infant welfare


Effects of perinatal conditions and local area socioeconomic status on early childhood mortality in New South Wales: linked data analysis - main report

This report analyses the relationship between early childhood mortality and maternal and baby characteristics at the time of birth (perinatal conditions) using a linked data set covering all babies born in NSW between 2005 and 2018.
Briefing paper

Preconception health and care: policy brief

Good health prior to pregnancy leads to better birth outcomes, improves the short- and long-term health of children and families and can reduce health inequities. Preconception care (PCC) involves the provision of counselling and education about the changes people can make to their health and...

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD): an update on policy and practice in Australia

Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) is a term used to describe the wide variety of lifelong developmental effects associated with prenatal alcohol exposure. This paper outlines developments for the prevention of FASD and the diagnosis and support of children and young people living with FASD...

Healthy eating guidelines for New Zealand babies and toddlers (0-2 years old)

This document provides updated population health recommendations for feeding babies and toddlers, from birth to two years of age, to promote healthy growth and development and help establish healthy eating behaviours.

CPD’s Early Childhood Development Initiative - Evidence Pack 1: building the case for reform

The Centre for Policy Development's Early Childhood Development (ECD) Initiative is working with sector leaders, senior officials and experts to catalyse progress towards a better ECD system. This evidence pack has been adapted from materials prepared by the CPD team for the first two meetings...

Intergenerational disadvantage: why maternal mental health matters

This paper analyses and synthesises new research linking a mother’s prenatal mental health to the child’s brain development, and shows how this ties into the problem of intergenerational disadvantage in New Zealand.
Briefing paper

Impact of maternal age on children coming into contact with the child protection system

This paper reports findings from analysis of Department of Communities and Justice (NSW) child protection data looking at the relationship between maternal age and child protection contact and discuss implications for policy and practice.

Antenatal care use and outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers and their babies: 2016-2017

This report explores the factors associated with antenatal care use among Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander mothers, and how these may relate to baby outcomes—including how this varies spatially across the Indigenous Regions (IREGs) of Australia.
Briefing paper

Improving the uptake of the Baby Friendly Health Initiative in Australian hospitals

Breastfeeding is a normal biological process and protects the health and well-being of mothers and babies. Yet breastfeeding continues to be undervalued by society, and in Australia women face multiple barriers to breastfeeding in the home, community, health care system and workforce. The Baby Friendly...
Journal article

Why validation is not enough: setting the scene for the implementation of the Kimberley Mum’s Mood Scale

This is an exploration of the Kimberley Mum’s Mood Scale (KMMS) to see if it can be clinically used as a culturally appropriate perinatal depression and anxiety screening tool for Aboriginal woman living in the Kimberley.

Not pregnant enough? Pregnancy and homelessness

This report outlines the perspectives of 14 women who have had recent experiences of pregnancy and homelessness. The research received approval from the Human Research Ethics Committees of RMIT University, La Trobe University and Launch Housing, and was overseen by a reference group with specialist...

Pregnancy warning labels on alcoholic beverages: approval report – proposal P1050

Food Standards Australia New Zealand (FSANZ) has assessed a proposal to consider a mandatory pregnancy warning label on packaged alcoholic beverages. Evidence demonstrates pregnancy warning labels on packaged alcoholic beverages can raise awareness of the risks of drinking alcohol during pregnancy and prompt discussion of...

Congenital heart disease in Australia

Globally, congenital heart disease affects around 9 in every 1,000 babies born. In Australia, a large number of children, young people and adults live with congenital heart disease. This report presents latest statistics and trends on the incidence of congenital heart disease, and on hospitalisation...
Journal article

‘Having a quiet word’: Yarning with Aboriginal women in the Pilbara region of Western Australia about mental health and mental health screening during the perinatal period

This study explores if it is appropriate to trial and validate the Kimberley Mum’s Mood Scale (KMMS) as a perinatal depression and anxiety screening tool with Aboriginal women in the Pilbara. Yarning as a methodology was used to guide interviews with 15 Aboriginal women in...

How can we better reach women and girls in crises?

This report proposes an approach to ensure that the extensive capacities of the U.S. government in the areas of maternal health, reproductive health, family plan­ning, and gender-based violence (GBV) prevention and response are no longer left on the sidelines in crisis response and recovery.

National Core Maternity Indicators 2017: summary report

The National Core Maternity Indicators (NCMIs) present information on measures of clinical activity and outcomes to assist in improving the quality of maternity services in Australia by establishing baseline data for monitoring and evaluating practice change.

Better together: supporting perinatal and infant mental health services

This project maps how services in the cities of Wanneroo/Joondalup interact to enhance the quality of perinatal and infant mental health services. The project aims to improve the system's responsiveness to the social wellbeing and mental health needs of families with infants and young children...

Pregnancy and homelessness: service responses

This research sought to better understand data collection processes for homeless pregnant women and how homeless services can better engage with this group.

Australian national breastfeeding strategy: 2019 and beyond

This strategy document seeks to achieve an enabling environment for breastfeeding through policies, baby-friendly health settings, health professional education and training, and universal and targeted breastfeeding education and support services.
Journal article

Limited progress in closing the mortality gap for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Australians of the Northern Territory

This research assesses whether progress is being made towards reducing Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander inequality in life expectancy and under‐five mortality in the Northern Territory.

Stillbirths and neonatal deaths in Australia 2015 and 2016: in brief

In 2015 and 2016, 5,702 babies died in the perinatal period. Three-quarters (4,263) were stillbirths and the remaining 1,439 were neonatal deaths.
Working paper

“Everyone my age doesn’t know what it’s like”: a mixed-method study of young mothers and social support in Australia

This research examines how young Australian mothers (i) compare to older mothers in levels of social support and personal resources, and (ii) perceive and experience the quality and type of social support available to them.

Supporting staff to work with children and families with complex needs: a checklist for organisations

When organisations address the realities of working with families with complex needs, frontline staff are more likely to feel supported, confident and better able to respond to those families’ needs. This paper provides managers, practice leaders and other decision makers with practical guidance on supporting...

Government response to the Health and Social Care Select Committee report on 'First 1000 days of life'

This paper sets out the UK Government’s response to the conclusions and recommendations made in the Health and Social Care Select Committee’s report First 1000 days of life.

Changing lives in our lifetime: global childhood report 2019

This report includes case studies of countries that have made strong progress in improving children’s well-being in recent decades.