Health Promotion

The World Health Organisation (WHO) defines the term ‘health promotion’ as ‘the process of enabling people to increase control over and to improve their health’ and also addresses individual, social and environmental actions.

The Ottawa Charter for Health Promotion identified five domains for action and all health promotion strategies will fall into these areas:

  1. Building healthy public policy
  2. Creating supportive environments
  3. Strengthening community action
  4. Developing personal skills
  5. Reorientating health services

Mental health promotion includes strategies which maintain and restore good mental health, as well as reduce and prevent mental illness.

The health promotion activities of the Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Program (SPIMHP) focus on three key areas: advocacy, partnerships, and capacity building. This work is conducted both in a hospital setting (at King Edward Memorial Hospital) and in the WA community.

Advocacy

The SPIMHP is focussed on continually working to advocate for and raise awareness of perinatal and infant mental health. This is done through multiple channels, including the bimonthly Perinatal and Infant Mental Health News and Events newsletter, traditional and social media, SPIMHP webpage, and community events and presentations.

To sign up to our newsletter or enquire about our community presentations, please email SPIMHP@health.wa.gov.au.

Partnerships

Partnerships with other organisations are fundamental to our work in perinatal and infant mental health. At King Edward Memorial Hospital, the SPIMHP offer health promotion expertise to support the services that help women experiencing mental health issues during the perinatal period. These services include the Mother Baby Unit (MBU), the department of Psychological Medicine and the Childbirth and Mental Illness clinic (CAMI) . The SPIMHP is also an associate partner of Mentally Healthy WA and the Act Belong Commit messages are featured prominently throughout our work.

A state-wide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion Network has also been created to bring together individuals and organisations who work in the area of perinatal and infant mental health and health promotion.

To join the Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion Network, please email SPIMHP@health.wa.gov.au.

Capacity Building

The SPIMHP offers support to organisations and endeavours throughout WA that promote perinatal and infant mental health and prevent perinatal and infant mental illness in the community, particularly around the following awareness events:

  • World Maternal Mental Health Day – 6 May 2020
  • Infant Mental Health Week in June
  • Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Action (PANDA) Week in November

For information on funding available for PANDA Week activities, please see our PANDA section below.

The team also produces a small booklet called ‘Finding help before and after baby arrives’, which can be given to new or expecting mums and families. This booklet contains an extensive list of services from across the state which may be helpful before and after a baby is born.

Currently being developed is a Health Promotion and Prevention Plan for Perinatal and Infant Mental Health. This will provide information to guide any organisation wanting to conduct perinatal and infant mental health promotion initiatives.

To learn more about the above awareness events, to request copies of the ‘Finding help’ booklet or to stay informed about the Health Promotion and Prevention Plan, please email SPIMHP@health.wa.gov.au.

Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Action (PANDA) Week
Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Australia (PANDA)

In 2020, Women and Newborn Health Service (WNHS) is partnering with PANDA: Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Australia for PANDA Week (external site).

Like PANDA, WNHS acknowledges this has been an unusual and difficult year, which makes PANDA Week more important than ever. With many expecting and new parents struggling due to the impact of COVID-19 and associated restrictions, it’s critical that we work together to support families facing mental health challenges at this time.

Want to get involved?

There are lots of ways take action this PANDA Week:

  • Run an event in your local area to raise awareness of perinatal mental health (some funding is available – see our Grants section below).
  • Check out WA’s PANDA Week resources (see below), including our PANDA Week Action Plan.
  • Take a look at PANDA’s digital toolkit and spread the word on social media.
  • Download or order some of PANDA’s factsheets, brochures and posters.

PANDA Week resources for WA:

  • PANDA Week Action Plan… coming soon
  • PANDA Week morning tea event toolkit… coming soon
  • PANDA Week videos… coming soon
  • PANDA Week survey… coming soon

Grants

The Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Program (SPIMHP) is offering grants of between $500 and $1,000 to government and non-government agencies to host events in remote, regional and metropolitan Western Australia to celebrate Perinatal Anxiety and Depression Action (PANDA) Week 2020, with applications now being accepted.

In Australia, around one in five expecting and new mums and up to one in ten new dads are likely to experience perinatal anxiety and depression (perinatal refers to the period from conception to one year after birth). Mental illnesses such as bipolar disorder, schizophrenia, borderline personality disorder and psychosis can also occur in the perinatal period. Although they are not as common as depression and anxiety, these are sometimes associated with poorer outcomes for the women who experience them, and their infants.

While anytime is a good time to talk about mental health, PANDA Week presents a great opportunity to engage people and communities in these conversations.

We can all play a role in supporting new and expecting parents. One way to do this is to get organise an event in your community this PANDA Week. Grant recipients will need to run an activity for women and families in the perinatal period (before, during and after pregnancy) in November 2020 to raise awareness of perinatal mental health. The theme is 'Tell someone who cares' (external site).

Applications addressing the needs of women, mothers and mothers-to-be with severe mental illness (e.g., mood disorders, psychotic disorders) are highly encouraged.

Partnerships between government and non-government agencies are also strongly encouraged particularly with local clinicians and/or services who treat and manage severe mental illness in the perinatal period.

Download the application form and for information, please contact SPIMHP@health.wa.gov.au.

Applications close at 4pm on 18 September 2020, with recipients announced on 30 September 2020.

For more information on perinatal depression, anxiety and other maternal mental health issues, as well as ways to look after your mental health, go to:

Useful documents and contacts

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 periodis Queensland Health’s  final report on the Perinatal Mental Health and Wellness project conducted from 2015-2017. 

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-year-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. Led 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:

Useful contacts

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.