PIMH Health Promotion

Health promotion is the process of enabling people to increase control over, and to improve, their health. Mental health promotion involves actions to create living conditions and environments that support good mental health and allow people to adopt and maintain healthy lifestyles. These include a range of actions to increase the chances of more people experiencing better mental health.

Perinatal and infant mental health promotion programs aim to keep people well and promote positive mental health and resilience. Strategies may include programs that focus on increasing social inclusion, raising community awareness of mental health issues and creating supportive environments. Prevention and early intervention are key components of perinatal and infant mental health promotion. 

There are a number of factors that are protective of good mental health and wellbeing which are described below. Health promotion initiatives that aim to impact on these factors can help communities to build supportive environments for good health and wellbeing. 

Protective factors for infant/child mental health

Infant/child

Parenting/Family

Social determinants

Infant/child

  • Good physical health
  • Secure attachment with primary caregiver
  • Availability of other attachment figures including in day care or when hospitalised
  • Sensitive medical and nursing care

Parenting/family

  • Nurturing, loving caregiver able to offer sensitively attuned responses to infant’s/child’s needs
  • Provision of consistent long term caregivers (especially for children in care)
  • Parents with history of secure attachment to own caregivers in childhood
  • Good parental reflective capacity

Social determinants

  • Safe community
  • Well-supported day care facilities
  • Availability of social support for parents at times of particular vulnerability such as the transition to parenthood
Source: Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Model of Care
Health Promotion at SPIMHP

Based at King Edward Memorial Hospital, the Senior Health Promotion Officer works with key staff within WA Health to support their work in promoting good mental health, and with colleagues around the state to build capacity in terms of perinatal and mental health promotion. The Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Conceptual Model shows the SPIMHP approach to mental health. 

Source: Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Model of Care 

If you are working in health promotion in Western Australia and perinatal and infant mental health is part of your role, then we would love to hear from you. The SPIMHP is starting up a new network for people working in this area for colleagues to collaborate, support each other and share ideas and resources. Please email us on SPIMHP@health.wa.gov.au for more information.

Promoting positive mental health and wellbeing is vital across the life course, and particularly important in the perinatal and early childhood period. The SPIMHP have developed a tool kit to help health professionals plan community events and collated some useful resources. Please get in touch if we can help support your work in other ways.

Tools and resources

Tool kit for planning a community event

The community event toolkit has been developed to help health professionals plan and run an event to raise awareness of perinatal and infant mental health. 

Please email us for a copy.

2018 event calendar

The 2018 events calendar has some key awareness raising events that are heavily promoted to raise awareness about mental health. However, any time is a good time to talk about mental health and the resources here can help with planning events and programs.

2018 Calendar of Events

Useful contacts

Useful documents

Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Model of Care

The Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Model of Care describes targeted interventions and services across the mental health continuum from primary preventative programs, to tertiary care. The framework has suggestions for integrating health promotion and early detection indicatives into practice.

Prevention First Framework

Developed by Everymind, Prevention First: A Prevention and Promotion Framework for Mental Health encourages strategic and coordinated action to prevent mental ill-health and promote mental health and wellbeing.

The Perinatal Mental Health and Wellness Project

The Perinatal Mental Health and Wellness Project: Developing a collaborative model for mental health promotion, prevention and early intervention in the perinatal period. This document from Queensland Health is the final report on the Perinatal Mental Health and Wellness project conducted from 2015-2017.

Core Prevention and Intervention for the Early Years: Best Practice Guidelines

These best practice guidelines were developed by the Canadian centre for the Advancement of infant and early childhood mental health. They provide suggestions for health promotion interventions at different stages of the child.

Urban 95 project

The Urban 95 project takes a holistic view of how to create ‘healthy, prosperous and vibrant cities where babies, toddlers and their families can thrive’ by asking people to consider the world from 95cms (the height of a 3 yr old child). The Urban 95 website has some great information about the project and some useful, innovative resources. These include a toolkit for designing urban play and child friendly urban design.

Prevention hub

Launched in May 2018, the prevention hub is Australia’s first hub for integrated research into anxiety and depression. Lead by the Black Dog Institute and Everymind, the hub aims to help facilitate the translation of research into real world outcomes. The hub identified three research priorities (workplace, healthcare and children, adolescent and families) and the research projects sitting underneath them:

Please note: The details provided on this page were correct at the time of publication and are subject to change at any time. Information provided about community resources is provided for education and information purposes only. Information about a service, product or treatment does not imply endorsement and is not intended to replace professional advice. All users should seek advice from a qualified professional for answers to their questions.