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Northern Territory 2023 Conference & Celebratory IDM Dinner

Northern Territory 2023 Conference & Celebratory IDM Dinner

Event Description

Join us for the 2023 Northern Territory Conference in Darwin to Celebrate International Day of the Midwife! This year's theme is Together Again: From Evidence to Reality. There will also be a Celebratory IDM dinner at the Darwin Sailing Club.


Download Program

Morning Tea is sponsored by NT Health Nursing and Midwifery

A casual celebratory IDM dinner and drinks will be at the Darwin Sailing Club. More details to follow.
Darwin Sailing Club
5 Atkins Drive
Fannie Bay NT 0820


Apply now for a scholarship to cover costs to attend the conference

Available to to ACM Members in NT. Applications close March 31st.


Keynote Presentation - Preterm Birth

Abstract: Despite being one of the safest countries in the world in which to give birth and be born, Australia regularly fails First Nations mothers and their children. Racial inequity is exemplified by First Nations mothers being 3-5 times more likely to die in childbirth, and their babies almost twice as likely to die in their first year, often because they were born too soon (preterm). Inequity increases with remoteness with the Northern Territory (NT) having some of the most challenging health needs in the country and preterm birth three times the national average in some settings. Solutions rely on a shared understanding of the problems and a response that incorporates both First Nations and Western knowledge. ‘Business as usual’ is no longer acceptable and the slow progress in meaningful change highlights the need for research and innovation to drive change and health system improvement. This presentation will highlight solutions driven by the Birthing on Country reform agenda, the RISE SAFELY translation framework and provide key examples of implementation and progress in the NT. Specifically, this talk will highlight what midwives can do as allies, to drive significant system reform that results in a transformational shift in practice

Sue Kildea

Sue Kildea is the Co-Director of The Molly Wardaguga Research Centre and Professor of Midwifery at Charles Darwin University. Sue is recognised internationally as a midwifery leader, a health services researcher and an advocate for returning birthing services to First Nations control, and rural and remote communities. She is passionate about the year before and after birth and see these as the best times to positively impact Mums, bubs and families for the best start in life. She uses research for social change and leads multi-site projects across Australia.

Abstract: Preterm birth (PTB) remains the leading cause of death in children up to 5 years of age. The national average rate of preterm birth in Australia has remained relatively constant over the last 10 years (between 8.1 and 8.7%). Sadly, many of these babies lose their fight for life. The Northern Territory has persistently suffered the highest rates of PTB in the country since 2017, reaching greater than 11%. In 2014 a comprehensive preterm birth prevention program was introduced in Western Australia. It consisted of new clinical guidelines, a state-wide outreach program consisting of workshops for healthcare practitioners and a public health social media campaign. The Initiative was successful in reducing the preterm birth rate state-wide in the first full year of implementation. The preterm birth rate across Western Australia fell by 7.6% and in the tertiary-level centre by 20%. This was the world’s first instance of a population-wide intervention program that successfully reduced preterm birth. Leaning on that experience, the Australian Preterm Birth Prevention Alliance was formed in 2018, with a vision to safely lower the rate of early birth across the nation. The Top End Alliance was launched in June 2019 and is working with chapters in each Australian state and territory as part of the Every Week Counts National Preterm Birth Prevention Collaborative. The Collaborative has brought together more than 50 Australian maternity hospitals in the hope to reduce the rate of preterm birth by 20% by July 2024.

Dr Carina Cotaru

NT Health Perinatal Mental Health/iCope Project

Timothy Packham

Timothy is a nurse and midwife who has been living and working in the NT for the past 6.5 years after moving from Victoria. Timothy has specialised in perinatal and infant mental health and has worked in PIMHS locally and a mother baby unit in Victoria. Timothy is passionate about contemporary mental health practices, early interventions/prevention, impact of relational trauma and raising awareness for perinatal and infant mental health through advocacy and participating on committees locally and nationally. Currently Timothy works as the Perinatal Mental Health Project Officer for the NT.

Diabetes in Pregnancy

Dr Louise Maple-Brown

Louise Maple-Brown is a Senior Endocrinologist at the Royal Darwin Hospital (NT, Australia), Deputy Director Research (April 2023) and Senior Principal Research Fellow at Menzies. Louise established and leads the Diabetes across the Lifecourse: Northern Australian Partnership. The partnership includes several large NHMRC-funded projects, including the Youth Type 2 Diabetes Models of Care, Northern Territory and Far North Queensland Diabetes in Pregnancy Partnership and The PANDORA (Pregnancy And Neonatal Diabetes Outcomes in Remote Australia) Cohort Study.

After completing the majority of her physician and endocrinology training at St Vincent’s Hospital Sydney, Louise moved to Darwin in 2002 to pursue her passion of working with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and communities to improve health outcomes. Louise was Head of Department of Endocrinology at Royal Darwin Hospital (2012-2022) and founded the NT Diabetes Network in 2018 (inaugural Chair 2018 -2022). She was a member of the Australian Diabetes Society Council (2014-2022) and the Council of the Australasian Diabetes in Pregnancy Society (2011-2014). Louise has been providing clinical diabetes services to urban and remote NT communities for over 20 years. She is a current member of the NT Clinical Senate.

In 2020 Louise was awarded the Australian Diabetes Society Ranji and Amara Wikramanayake clinical Diabetes Mid-Career Research award and in 2021, Louise was elected as a Fellow of the Australian Academy of Health and Medical Sciences.

Sian Graham

My name is Sian Graham and I am a Noongar and Bardi -Jawi woman. I am currently a Senior Research Officer working on the Diabetes Across the Lifecourse; Northern Australian Partnership. I have had a number of opportunities to undertake research in both urban and remote communities across the Northern Territory and the Kimberley. I have worked at Menzies School of Health Research for 14 years across several divisions, including Child Health, Wellbeing and Preventable Chronic Disease, and Tropical and Emerging diseases. During this time, I have been able to connect with participants and build strong relationships based on trust and respect, as well as build on my capacity as researcher.

I am dedicated and committed to working towards improving health outcomes for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. I believe that it is my responsibility as an Aboriginal researcher to advocate for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people and their rights within research. I believe Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people must play an imperative role in research, and we need to work together collaboratively to ensure Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people have an opportunity to provide input into the direction of our research.

Safer Baby Bundle

Abstract: The Safer Baby Bundle is a bundle of five elements of evidence based maternity care aimed at reducing the number of preventable stillbirths that occur throughout Australia after 28 weeks gestation, by 20% by 2025. The Northern Territory reported the highest number of stillbirths across Australia in the most recent Mothers and Babies report (AIHW 2020) with First Nation families continuing to be overrepresented. The bundle is in various stages of implementation and evaluation throughout Australia sponsored by the national Stillbirth Centre for Research and Excellence.

Katy Hoyle

Katy is a Midwife and Midwifery Educator who trained and worked in the UK prior to making the move to the Northern Territory. Surviving tropical heat, living with crocodiles and huntsman spiders, one year has turned into ten with no sign of an Australian tan yet in sight. In addition to continuing to work as a midwife across all settings, Katy also teaches across hospitals in remote areas of the NT. Katy is currently employed in the Safer Baby Bundle implementation lead across the NT. She is also a fur mum to a cat, dog and two fluffy cows.

The Kimberley Mum’s Mood Scale: changing the face of perinatal depression and anxiety screening

Abstract: The Kimberley Mum’s Mood Scale (KMMS) was co-designed with Aboriginal women and healthcare professionals across the Kimberley to improve culturally secure screening practices for perinatal depression and anxiety. This presentation describes the development of the KMMS and the implementation of the KMMS across the Kimberley from 2018-2021. In addition, this presentation explores the work of the KMMS in Far North Queensland, Nhulunbuy, and across the Pilbara. Through this presentation we invite a discussion on how the KMMS may be applicable for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women accessing the health services in which you work.

Emma Carlin and Erica Spry

Ms Emma Carlin (Kimberley Aboriginal Medical Services and Rural Clinical School Western Australia – The University of Western Australia), Ms Erica Spry ‘Roobaanjarn’ (Kimberley Aboriginal Medical Services and Rural Clinical School Western Australia – The University of Western Australia) and Professor Julia Marley (Rural Clinical School Western Australia – The University of Western Australia) For the last five years Ms Emma Carlin, Ms Erica Spry and Professor Marley have worked on implementing the Kimberley Mum’s Mood Scale across the Kimberley region and assessing its validity and acceptability for Aboriginal women in other regions. They are Broome based researchers with an extensive footprint in maternal child health, social and emotional wellbeing, and chronic disease research.

Ticket Pricing

 Non Members 
 Members  $100.00
 Student Members   $75.00

Qualify for CPD Hours

6 CPD hours

IDM Celebration Dinner

Dinner is separate to the conference. All are welcome to attend and order their own meals at the Sailing Club.

Friday, 05 May 2023
8:30 am to 4:30 pm
Non Members $200 / Members $100 / Student Members $75
Oaks Darwin Elan Hotel
Darwin, NT NT 0800
6.00 CPD Hours