There is now substantial evidence that the inclusion of fathers in health services during the perinatal and early parenting periods is beneficial for fathers and their children, as well as their partners and other family members. Historically, services in these contexts have been provided by female staff engaging only with the mother.
A comprehensive assessment of father-inclusive practice (FIP) was undertaken for a parenting and early childhood service (Ngala) which included an audit of programs, an analysis of focus groups with fathers, and a staff survey (previously published by the authors). The staff survey and organisational audit were based on reputable tools and literature that were modified to suit an early parenting organisation.
While Ngala’s programs generally showed positive signs of following FIP, there remains room for improvement. For example, some programs reported no mention of the father role in their service model/plan and there was a lack of FIP in their reflective practice and staff meetings. In addition, many programs could benefit with provision of FIP material such as welcoming display messages and male-specific reading materials for waiting areas.
The recommendations reflect the ongoing work undertaken within the organisation to achieve a sustainable FIP. To achieve further improvement, it is necessary to build a culture of FIP. This requires a focus on ongoing staff education, practice governance processes, and specific strategies which engage and involve fathers. It is anticipated that the findings will be helpful to the staff and leadership of similar organisations who are also seeking to implement a FIP.
Background Western Australia (WA) has provided a near-continuous public sector school health service since 1906, but that history has not previously been well described in the literature.
Aim The aim of this paper is to describe the first years of the WA school health service using publicly available primary sources.
Methods Digitised newspaper reports of the time were reviewed, together with original historical documents held by the WA State Records Office.
Findings The people, events and circumstances that contributed to the WA school health service from its earliest beginnings in late 1905 to the formal establishment of the service in 1911 are described and the names of some of the first nurses who undertook school health work in 1911–1912 are recorded.
Conclusion This descriptive paper restores lost knowledge about the individuals and influences that existed at the earliest inception of the public sector school health service in WA.
Introduction The Baby Coming You Ready (BCYR) program emerged from the Kalyakool Moort PhD research which explored barriers and enablers to effective mental health screening. Current practice using the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) has not been validated for use with Aboriginal women. Our aim is to pilot a clinically and culturally effective alternative for practitioners to assess and support Aboriginal women’s social and emotional wellbeing (SEWB) and health outcomes during pregnancy and early parenting.
Methods and analysis Diverse pilot sites have been selected in metropolitan Perth and regional perinatal health settings. This study will use a mixed method approach to data collection and analysis. The aim is to improve service quality and implementation science (IS) is the best way to promote the uptake of evidence-informed practices into ‘business as usual’. This methodological approach specifies context mechanisms to explain what works, for whom, under which circumstances, and how. Additionally, the most significant change (MSC) technique will be drawn on to illuminate similarities and differences in what the different groups and individuals value. Qualitative data will be obtained from interviews and focus groups with clients, practitioners and managers, and analysed using thematic analysis. De-identified quantitative data will be obtained from i) the WA Health (STORK) midwifery data set and ii) the digitised BCYR rubric.
The Lead Research Group and Aboriginal Research Reference Group will maintain research governance oversight via regular review cycles over an 18-month period. Members will guide the synthesis and interpretation of evidence, and recommendation development and dissemination will be based on the evaluation findings. The pilot study will collect the clinical evidence needed to support a future state-wide and national rollout.