NURS 3006 Complex Care 2

Credit Points 10

Legacy Code 401039

Coordinator Farnoosh Asghar Vahedi Opens in new window

Description This subject continues to explore the complex issues surrounding childbirth with a particular emphasis on those women who have pre-existing conditions. Dilemmas and challenges that surround infertility, medical conditions and previous surgical conditions as well as environmental issues that may impact on pregnancy and or birth, are examined. In addition, the subject includes the implications and management for the care of the associated neonate.

School Nursing & Midwifery

Discipline Midwifery

Student Contribution Band HECS Band 1 10cp

Check your fees via the Fees page.

Level Undergraduate Level 3 subject

Pre-requisite(s) NURS 2004 and NURS 2026

Co-requisite(s) NURS 3030 and NURS 3005 for students in 4684


Students must be enrolled in 4684 Bachelor of Midwifery.

Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this subject, students should be able to:

1. Explain pre-existing physiological, medical and surgical conditions that may impact on pregnancy, labour or birth outcomes, including the pathophysiology and management of obstetric emergencies.
2. Conduct systematic assessment, implementation and evaluation of midwifery care for women and babies who have complex needs or are in complex perinatal situations.
3. Critically review the midwife’s role in caring for neonates who present with complex needs.
4. Apply knowledge of pharmacotherapeutics and medicines in clinical practice for pre-existing conditions and obstetric emergencies in complex maternal and neonatal care 
5. Critique negotiated models and collaborative care for complex situations by using a Primary Health Care framework in a variety of settings.

Subject Content

1. Environmental issues
• Effects of exposure to harmful agents (eg drugs, radiation, environmental chemicals and pathogens) on fetal development
• Causes of congenital abnormalities
• Physiological effects of alcohol and other drugs used by the woman during pregnancy
• The impact of illicit drugs and alcohol on the neonate

2. Caring for women with existing medical and/or gynaecological conditions that may impact on pregnancy and or birth
• Cardiac abnormalities
• Renal disorders
• Uterine abnormalities
• Thyroid dysfunction
• Cancer
• Obesity and bariatric surgery
• Termination of pregnancy - 2nd trimester

3. Caring for the woman with previous conditions or special needs that may impact on pregnancy and or birth
• Female genital mutilation
• Breast surgery (implants, reduction)
• Other surgery
• Women with disabilities
• Blood dyscrasias

4. Working with obstetric emergencies
• Shoulder dystocia
• Cord prolapse
• Uterine inversion
• Uterine rupture
• Shock
• Amniotic Fluid Embolism (anaphylactoid syndrome of pregnancy)
• Maternal resuscitation
• Neonatal resuscitation

5. Working in partnership with women in complex situations
• Communication skills to work effectively with women and families with complex physiological needs
• Separation of mother and newborn
• Support services available to parents

6. Neonates with  complex needs
• Neonatal Abstinence Syndrome’
• Fetal alcohol syndrome
• Scalp PH/lactate and interpretation of findings
• Acyanotic heart disease
• CDH Babies
• Withdrawal of care in the nursery

7. Pharmacology for complex conditions
- Describe the pharmacokinetics and pharmacodynamics of medications used in complex maternal and neonatal conditions
- Quality use of medicine for complex conditions
- Describe the effect of medications on the foetus, the neonate and breastmilk


The following table summarises the standard assessment tasks for this subject. Please note this is a guide only. Assessment tasks are regularly updated, where there is a difference your Learning Guide takes precedence.

Type Length Percent Threshold Individual/Group Task
Case Study 2000 words 50 N Individual
Final Exam 2 hours 50 N Individual

Teaching Periods

Autumn (2024)

Parramatta - Victoria Rd


Subject Contact Farnoosh Asghar Vahedi Opens in new window

View timetable Opens in new window

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