Ministry of Health learning

Sudden Unexpected Death of an Infant

Across New Zealand health professional groups, there is a good level of understanding of the major SUDI risks (e.g. smoking / safe sleeping) but knowledge and understanding of all of current known risks is not consistent due to changing evidence and policy. Therefore, the aim of this programme is to build on pre-existing knowledge but work towards correcting misconceptions and to reinforce current evidence-based guidance.  Raising health professional knowledge levels of SUDI is vital towards supporting families better understanding that it can be prevented.

The resource has four specific modules which include describing: what SUDI is; the specific vulnerability factors, how to engage effectively with Maori and Pacific Peoples on this health concern; and what prevention models can be applied.

The benefits of the resources are:

  • They are relevant to well child health services and related health workforce practice;
  • They are accessible and can be completed by health professionals in their own time;
  • They can improve your engagement with Mâori and Pacific peoples, and
  • You can gain a certificate on completion.

Find out more here(external link).

Breastfeeding

New Zealand is a signatory to the World Health Organization International Code of Marketing of Breastmilk Substitutes (WHO Code). The WHO Code aims for safe and adequate nutrition for infants by protecting, promoting and supporting breastfeeding, and ensuring proper use of breastmilk substitutes (infant formula), when they are necessary.

The Ministry of Health is responsible for implementing and monitoring New Zealand’s interpretation of the WHO Code. It does so under two self-regulatory codes of practice:

  • Code of Practice for Health Workers (Health Workers’ Code) (Ministry of Health, 2007)
  • Infant Nutrition Council (INC) Code of Practice for the Marketing of Infant Formula in New Zealand (INC Code of Practice) (2007)

Find out more here(external link).

Safeguarding children

This is a free e-learning package which teaches about the signs and symptoms of child abuse, how to refer to Oranga Tamariki and individuals' responsibilities.

Find out more here(external link).

Online education on antenatal screening for Down Syndrome & other conditions

The National Screening Unit (NSU) offers online education for health practitioners who provide services within the antenatal and newborn screening programmes. LearnOnline(external link) is a vocational training resource hub for New Zealand’s community of health practitioners. There is a growing number of courses available, provided by different organisations, for health workers either studying or working in different fields of practice.

The NSU offers five eLearning Modules through LearnOnline(external link).

  • Screening Principles and Practice
  • Quality Improvements in Antenatal Screening for Down syndrome and other conditions (QIASD)
  • Antenatal HIV Screening Programme (AHIV)
  • Universal Newborn Hearing Screening and Early Intervention Programme (UNHSEIP)
  • Newborn Metabolic Screening Programme (NMSP).

The NSU antenatal and newborn screening modules have been approved by the Midwifery Council of New Zealand for five professional development points per module.

  • Points are awarded after completion of the final assessment in each module with a pass rate of 80 percent 

The first module Screening Principles and Practice must be completed and points allocated before points can be allocated to any of the other four modules.