This unit (HMB3004) will expand on the knowledge gained in the Midwifery Care and Contemporary Nursing units. The approach facilitates students' application of knowledge to practice in the provision of care of the sick newborn. Students will learn how to utilise information from women's prenatal, labour and post birth care to inform and guide their assessments of the newborn and make appropriate referrals to other professionals. Students will build on the knowledge gained in previous units to enable them to support women and newborns with complex feeding requirements. Students will also apply mental health knowledge to conduct in-depth examinations of perinatal mental health issues to effectively care for women experiencing these issues. This is a combined theory and practice unit with 80 hours of supervised nursing practice undertaken in a Special Care Nursery practice setting.

Unit details

VU Sunshine Clinical School
Study level:
Credit points:
Unit code:


HNB2002 - Contemporary Nursing and Mental Health A and

HNB2006 - Professional Experience Placement 3 Nursing Mental Health and

HMB3001 - Midwifery Care 2: Women with Complex Childbearing Needs and

HMB3002 - Midwifery Practice Experience 2

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this unit, students will be able to:
  1. Critically examine how culturally safe therapeutic models and strategies can promote maternal and newborn wellbeing;  
  2. Critically examine how therapeutic models and strategies can promote maternal wellbeing;  
  3. Analyse and demonstrate how to support the comprised newborn, including emergency management, safe medication administration and neonatal resuscitation and link to supervised safe practice in the Special Care Nursery setting;  
  4. Contextualise how the prenatal, labour and post birth assessment findings inform the conduct of newborn discharge assessment and utilisation of referral pathways using intraprofessional and interprofessional communication; and  
  5. Investigate how infant feeding and lactation issues can impact on maternal and newborn wellbeing in the initial perinatal period.  


The assessment tasks link to the learning outcomes and graduate capabilities. In the first assessment, students will submit a reflective piece of written work on perinatal mental health assessment and the role of the midwife in response to the simulation already undertaken. For assessment two, case studies will be used to assess the student's comprehension of the unit content with emphasis on neonatal care whilst undertaking placement. Students will also participate in a neonatal skills assessment. The practicum assessment is undertaken within the scheduled timing of the 80 hours of supervised practice in the Special Care Nursery setting.
Assessment type Description Grade
Assignment Part A Reflection on perinatal mental health assessment (800 words) 35%
Assignment Part B Reflections of working with sick newborns x 2 (Week 3 and Week 4 on whilst on placement) (800 words) 35%
Practicum Neonatal skills assessment (30 minutes) 30%
Test Medication administration – open book self-directed learning allocation in block (hurdle) 0%
Practicum ANSAT Performance Appraisal 0%
To gain an overall pass in this unit, students must attend 85% of all practical laboratories and clinical simulation for essential skill development as per ANMAC expectations and are required to complete and/or submit all assessments. Attendance requirements for midwifery skills laboratories and simulated-learning laboratories are integral to safe nursing and midwifery practice and preparing students for nursing professional experience practice. Any absences and non-submissions must be supported with documentation to the unit convenor. To pass this unit, students must also achieve 100% for the medication administration test (hurdle). Accuracy in medication administration is an absolute requirement for safe midwifery practice. Students have 2 attempts at the medication administration test. Weighting will be awarded based on the student's final attempt. Students must complete 80 nursing professional experience practice hours and a 'Pass' grading in the ANSAT Professional Appraisal. Supplementary assessment is not available for the ANSAT Professional Appraisal.

Required reading

Midwifery: Preparation for practice 4th ed.
Pairman, S., Tracy, S. K., Dahlen, H. G., Lesley Dixon, L. (2019)
Chatswood, NSW: Elsevier.

Additional readings will be made available on VU Collaborate.

Where to next?

As part of a course

This unit is studied as part of the following courses. Refer to the course page for information on how to apply for the course.

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