Department of Health

Maternal and child health workforce training and resources

Key messages

  • The Department of Health funds a range of formal and informal learning and development opportunities for Victorian MCH nurses.
    • This includes:
      • conferences
      • professional development
      • scholarships
      • workforce attraction incentives.
  • MCH nurses, registered nurses and registered midwives are required to fulfill annual continuing professional development (CPD) as part of their registration requirements.
  • The Nursing and Midwifery Board of Australia (NMBA) sets the CPD standards, and produces guidelines and other resources for MCH nurses.

Victorian Maternal and Child Health Conference

The Victorian Maternal and Child Health Conference is funded by the Department of Health and delivered bi-annually in partnership with the Municipal Association of Victoria (MAV).

The conference provides an opportunity for the workforce to come together and learn about a range of clinical practice, legal requirements and government reform areas that impact on the MCH Service.

The state-wide MCH Conference is open to all MCH nurses, MCH students and allied health professionals working in the MCH sector.

Upcoming conferences

The next Victorian MCH Conference will be held on 22 March 2024 at the Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre.

In support of new ways of working and coming together, the MCH conferences are hybrid events with in-person registrations as well as the opportunity to register and join online.


Registrations for the next conference will open in February 2024. Check the MAV website for more informationExternal Link or email

Previous conferences

Presentations and information on previous MCH conferences are available on the MAV website.

Victorian Maternal and Child Health scholarships

The MCH Scholarship Program is a state-wide initiative to support registered nurses and midwives to undertake postgraduate studies in Child and Family Health Nursing at 3 universities:

  • La Trobe University
  • RMIT University, and
  • Federation University.

This initiative aims to grow the future MCH nursing workforce so that it is sustainable and able to meet future service needs.

The department supports the MCH Scholarship Program by providing funding for:

  • Full-time students over 1 year.
  • Part-time students over 2 years.

The number and value of scholarships offered will be determined based on the number of eligible students enrolled in the postgraduate course.

Bursaries are also available for eligible students.

How to apply

Federation, La Trobe and RMIT universities are administering the MCH Scholarship Program for 2024 in partnership with the department.

Please apply through these universities:

Applications are now open.

MCH Workforce Support program

The MCH Workforce Support program provides funding across Local Government Areas and Aboriginal Community Controlled Organisations.

This program supports clinical placements, graduate placements, and clinical preceptor programs as strategies to build capacity in Victorian MCH services.

The department is supporting this priority by allocating funds to MCH service providers to contribute to the costs associated with:

  • placements for MCH nursing students commencing study
  • the provision of support for graduate MCH nurses commencing work
  • clinical preceptor (teaching) programs across MCH service providers
  • local recruitment and promotion strategies. These are designed to attract more MCH nurses and multidisciplinary staff into MCH services, and promote these settings as positive workplaces.

If you require further information about the MCH Workforce Support, please email

Professional development (mandatory)

The following professional development is required to be undertaken by all MCH nurses. MCH nurses who have previously completed the professional development may use the modules for revision.

Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander Cultural Safety Training

Cultural safety training is funded by the department and focuses on developing broad foundational knowledge of Aboriginal cultures, history, and working in partnership to provide services to Aboriginal families.

The training will support MCH nurses in their professional competency to practice in a culturally safe way and build the capacity of MCH services. They can then implement these culturally safe practices into organisational processes and policies.

All MCH nursing and non-nursing staff are expected to undertake the training. Staff who completed the training in 2019 may use these modules for revision.

Cultural safety training will run in 2024.

If you require further information about Cultural Safety training, or would like to register please email

Autism professional development

Online Autism professional development training is funded by the department.

The training:

  • Assists MCH nurses to build their skills and confidence in identifying early signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).
  • Provides appropriate referrals during the Key Ages and Stages (KAS) visits at 12, 18 and 24 months of age.

MCH nurses who have undertaken this training in 2019 can use the modules for revision (this revision is recommended every 2 years).

New participants will receive a certificate on completion of all modules.


MCH coordinators/managers and university course coordinators can register staff by emailing their details to La Trobe University via

  • first name and last name
  • email address
  • name of MCH service/university/Early Parenting Centres).

Sleep and settling e-learning training course

Tweddle Child and Family Health Service (Tweddle) and the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare have developed an online training course in the Sleep and settling model of care.

Completion of this course is mandatory prior to undertaking workplace workshops on sleep and settling.

MCH staff can register via Centre for Excellence in Child and Family WelfareExternal Link online form.

Training in Child Information Sharing Scheme, Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme and Multi Agency Risk Assessment and Management

Online learning for the Child Information Sharing Scheme (CISS) and Family Violence Information Sharing Scheme (FVISS), and Multi Agency Risk Assessment and Management (MARAM) is available for all workforces via the Information Sharing and MARAM Online Learning systemExternal Link .

Mandatory courses

MCH nurses are required to complete the following online modules:

  • DH Information sharing schemes online training
  • Family violence foundational knowledge - (DH)
  • eLearn: MARAM Victim Survivor Screening and Identification.

MCH nurses who have previously completed the CISS, FVISS and MARAM training may use the above modules for revision.

Additional modules are also available under the Health workforces category in the portal.

These modules are optional for MCH nurses.

Optional courses

Further optional online workshops on MARAM, provided by the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare, are also available for MCH nurses:

  • MARAM Identification Level Training – for new starters or those wanting refresher training (4 hours).
  • MARAM Intermediate Level Training – for new starters or those wanting refresher training (4 hours).
  • Putting MARAM Into Practice Workshops – all are welcome to attend these workshops on various topics however, they are well suited for those who have completed MARAM intermediate-level training and who want to expand their learning (4 hours).

Email for more information and to register.

Family Violence Multi Agency Risk Assessment and Management (MARAM) - MCH leadership training

MARAM leading alignment training is for organisational leaders, chief executive officers (CEOs), directors or senior managers across all organisations/agencies prescribed under the MARAM framework.

The training:

  • helps managers lead and embed MARAM within their organisation/agency.
  • promotes an understanding of the MARAM framework including key strategies and requirements such as practice and policies to align with MARAM.

For more details visit the Safe and EqualExternal Link website.

Aboriginal MCH Family Violence MARAM framework training

The Aboriginal MCH workforce can access specialised training in family violence.

The department has partnered with the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family WelfareExternal Link to offer interactive webinar training in the family violence MARAM framework.

The training will support Aboriginal MCH workers understand their MARAM framework responsibilities, including what it means for their day-to-day practice.

It is available to Aboriginal staff and any non-Aboriginal staff who work closely with Aboriginal families, and can be arranged with the Centre for Excellence in Child and Family Welfare throughout 2023-24.

If you require further information about the training, please email

Trauma informed practice training – My Early Relational Trauma Informed Learning (MERTIL)

The MERTIL platformExternal Link offers training in the identification of, and response to, early relational trauma.

MERTIL translates attachment and caregiving theory and evidence for application in all frontline early childhood workforces.

For those who have already completed MERTIL, a 2-hour Mini MERTILExternal Link refresher course is now also available.

Protecting children: mandatory reporting and other obligations

Mandatory reporting refers to the legal requirement of certain professional groups to report a reasonable belief of child physical or sexual abuse to child protection authorities.

For more information, visit the Mandatory reportingExternal Link page on the Department of Families, Fairness and Housing website.

Other professional development

The following professional development is available to MCH nurses.

Dental Health

Online oral health training for MCH nurses, is available from Dental Health Services Victoria.

Visit the Healthy Families Healthy SmilesExternal Link MCH nurses page to complete the Baby teeth count too! training course.

INFANT facilitator training (INfant Feeding, Active play and NuTrition)

The Victorian MCH workforce can access an online self-paced course to implement the INFANT program at their service. The course runs over a four-week period and is funded by the department and free of charge.

The program is designed to help parents and families with healthy eating and active play from the start of their baby’s life. It promotes healthy eating, increased active play and reduced screen time for babies from birth until 2 years of age.

It consists of 4 group sessions for parents/caregivers led by a nurse or other practitioner. The content is reinforced via a mobile app called My Baby NowExternal Link .

Upcoming course dates: 5 February to 1 March 2024.

Register via the INFANT programExternal Link website.

Kidsafe Victoria’s MCH Child Injury Prevention e-learning tool

Kidsafe Victoria’s MCH Child Injury Prevention e-learning tool has been specifically designed to support MCH nurses.

It provides up-to-date information on:

  • a range of child injury prevention issues
  • relevant Australian Standards
  • best practice recommendations
  • links to useful resources that can be provided to parents and carers.

The tool takes approximately 2-3 hours to complete which users can work through at their own pace.

There are 5 modules to complete:

  • Home safety.
  • Road safety.
  • Water safety.
  • Safe play.
  • Product safety.

Upon completion of all 5 modules, a certificate of completion will be provided which can be counted towards annual CPD points.

Please visit Kidsafe Victoria's MCHExternal Link page for more information or to obtain your council registration link.

The Royal Children’s Hospital paediatric health education for maternal and child health nurses

This online education program based on a Community of Practice, is designed specifically for MCH nurses.

It includes monthly interactive webinars (recordings available), an online chat forum, resources, and feedback to support practice in early child health and development.

The program is designed for MCH nurses (including students), community nurses and interested allied health professionals with an interest.

Cost: $80 + GST to access all course materials from 1 July 2023 until 31 July 2024.


Royal Women’s Hospital midwifery update for MCH nurses

The Maternity Update program is a 4-hour online program dedicated and tailored to MCH nurses across Victoria.

Run by the Maternity Services Education Program (MSEP) at the Royal Women’s Hospital (RWH), this program aims to refresh knowledge and review recent evidence-based practices in maternity postnatal care, working our way to bridging the gap between hospitals and community settings.

The online format allows members to connect from a distance, with sessions delivered in an interactive forum with expert guest speakers.

The program will include topics of:

  • maternal postnatal care and complications
  • neonatal care and complications as well as
  • assessment and management of early breastfeeding.

These are presented by a clinical midwifery consultant at RWH and lactation consultant.

The workshops are funded by the department and are free for Victorian MCH nurses.

A total of 8 workshops will be offered in 2023/2024 with capacity for 50 participants in each. Attendance at these updates is suggested every 2-3 years.

Registrations are available through EventbriteExternal Link .

If you require further information about the midwifery updates, please email via

Parent's Evaluation of Developmental Status (PEDS)

PEDS eLearning training is available through the Centre for Community Child HealthExternal Link through the Royal Children's Hospital Melbourne.

For training enquiries, email and identify that you work in a Victorian maternal and child health service.

Other resources

Victorian Early Years Learning and Development Framework (VEYLDF)

The Victorian Early Years Learning and Development FrameworkExternal Link includes a range of discipline-specific guidelines and practice resources. It supports all professionals who work with children aged 0 to 8.

Perinatal mental health and psychosocial assessment resource manual

This manual has been developed by expert staff at the Parent-Infant Research Institute (PIRI), Mercy Women's Hospital and Austin Health perinatal, who have an extensive background in perinatal mental health, as well as health professional training.

RedNose - Red Nose Safe Sleeping eLearning Course

Online learning resources for maternal and child health nurses are available from the RedNoseExternal Link website.

QUIT smoking training

QUIT smoking intervention online trainingExternal Link is available on the QUIT website.

Reviewed 02 January 2024


Contact us

Maternal and Child Health Service The Maternal and Child Health and Parenting Unit manages the MCH Service in Victoria.

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