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Protecting Normal Birth Physiology

Protecting Normal Birth Physiology

Event Description

First of all – you are warmly welcome to attend our first in-person branch event since early 2020!

The promotion of normal birth has been in discussion for many years and is still controversial and largely unresolved: 

Does “normal birth matter?” 
Does referring to “normal” birth exclude others?
Is a focus on “normal birth” dangerous??!

We are committed to continuing the discussion with a range of presenters who will offer their perspectives on the issue.
Please join us in Geelong for a day of discussion, new research and unique perspectives. 

Keynote Speakers

Dr Deborah Fox

Dr Deborah Fox is Senior Lecturer in Midwifery, Coordinator of the Bachelor of Midwifery degree and a core member of the Centre for Midwifery, Child and Family Health at University of Technology Sydney. She is an Associate Editor of the Elsevier journal 'Midwifery' and supervises Masters and PhD research students in midwifery and public health. The focus of her research is upon how new and emerging technologies may influence midwifery practice and enable women with complex pregnancies greater choice and control in pregnancy and birth. An innovative clinician, she collaborated with obstetric colleagues in 2011 to establish Singapore’s first caseload midwifery model, 'EMMa Care'. Dr Fox has published widely in peer reviewed journals and has presented her research in the UK, Europe, Canada, and throughout South East Asia and Australia.

Sharon Stoliar

Sharon received her Bachelor of Nursing (2006) and Graduate Diploma in Midwifery (2008) from UTS. She later obtained a Master of Public Health (2013) and Master of International Public Health (2013) from UNSW and has worked in several maternity units and Public Health Units across Sydney. During her training in Public Health, Sharon completed an internship at the World Health Organization Collaborating Centre, UTS, and worked as a research assistant for UNSW. Until recently, she worked as a Sessional Academic at WSU and UTS, and is currently enrolled in a PhD at Western Sydney University researching the personal pregnancy and birthing experiences of women who are midwives.

Scars of Gold is her first book which details her traumatic birth experience and was the catalyst for undertaking a PhD.


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Dr Jen Hocking

Jen is a registered nurse and midwife who worked in the public maternity system in Victoria for 20 years between 1997 and 2018. Jen has been a lecturer in the Bachelor of Midwifery program at the Australian Catholic University since 2018. Jen’s PhD was an ethnographic study examining the clinical practice of Lactation Consultants who provide support and care for breastfeeding women. She found that relationships were central to the care they offered. Jen is interested in how midwives and healthcare systems can support fabulous breastfeeding experiences that build connection between mothers and their newborn babies. Jen likes yoga, running with her dogs and Twitter: @jenhock13

Leonie Rastas

Leonie Rastas is known for her C-section recovery advocacy and support. She is a nurse, midwife, author, educator and founding director of ‘Caesarcare’, an online service business helping educate women in post-C-section recovery. She survived six caesarean births herself and has worked with thousands of C-section mothers during her forty years in clinical practice. Leonie also taught in the Bachelor of midwifery program for ten years at Australian Catholic University and Charles Sturt University. In 2010 the Australian College of Nursing admitted Leonie as a Fellow in recognition of her service to holistic healthcare by establishing a holistic health promotion charity in 2005. In 2011 Leonie introduced to maternity units the ‘Comfort Shawl’ and ‘Pocket Hearts’ project to provide keepsakes for parents of stillborn babies. The Red Nose foundation later adopted the project and now supplies Australia wide maternity units. Leonie’s recent achievement is co-authoring the ‘C-section Recovery Manual-Your Body Your Recovery’. In addition, Leonie has designed a variety of medical aids, and her TGA approved wound splint was on the shortlist for the Innovation award at the Australian Healthcare Week Sydney in 2019. Leonie has a passion for working with women to enhance healing and flourishing after unexpected outcomes.

Tina Pettigrew

Tina’s experience in the maternity service arena is rich and diverse spanning more than 30 years. From her rural consumer advocacy roots, to a proven midwifery leader and innovator in clinical midwifery practice, Tina has developed specialist expert knowledge and skills in managing and working in midwifery continuity of care models, and in particular, midwifery group practice (MGP) as the key to sustaining rural maternity care and in improving perinatal outcomes for disadvantaged women. Tina is the Maternity Services Coordinator at Maryborough District Health Service in the Central Goldfields of Victoria, which has recently implemented MGP as standard care for all women. Her commitment continues to ensure rural women have access to quality and safe maternity care close to home, within a multidisciplinary and collaborative framework of maternity service provision.

Dr Mary-Ann Davey

Mary-Ann Davey is a perinatal epidemiologist with a clinical background as a midwife and a maternal and child health nurse. In addition to her clinical qualifications she has completed a perinatal epidemiology-focussed doctorate, and a Master of Epidemiology. Mary-Ann's research interests stem largely from questions that arose in clinical practice and focus on safely keeping birth normal and reducing caesarean section, breastfeeding and identification of fetal growth restriction, with an interest in long-term outcomes. Mary-Ann works in the Department of Obstetrics & Gynaecology at Monash University, and at Safer Care Victoria with the Consultative Council on Obstetric and Paediatric Mortality and Morbidity.

Qualify for CPD Hours

7 hours of CPD

Cancellation Policy

A full refund will be given up to 14 days prior to the event. An organisation may send an alternative delegate if registration has been paid in full and the registered person is unable to attend. Please click here to read our full list of terms and conditions

Saturday, 05 November 2022
8:30 am to 4:30 pm
Member Price: $150
Novotel Geelong
10/14 Eastern Beach Road
Geelong VIC 3220
7.00 CPD Hours