Cochrane Database


This is a large library of good quality research performed around the world. All the information is collected and combined into a review providing us with evidence-based medicine on which to make our decisions. These reviews are accessible free to everyone.



Australian Breastfeeding Association


This site provides great information about all aspects of breastfeeding your baby.



Medications in Pregnancy


This is the official TGA site for Health Professionals and it explains the Category System in place for all prescribed medication. You are able to type in a medication and it will tell you the Category. For more information, please check with your Obstetrician or call the Pharmacy at King Edward Hospital on 6458 2723.



Exercise in Pregnancy


This is information from the Australian Department of Health providing a good overview and guidelines regarding exercise during your pregnancy. Please discuss more specific issues with your Obstetrician.





Information regarding Listeria can be conflicting and confusing. This is the official WA Health Department site with up-to-date information and guidelines. You are able to contact the 'Environmental Health Directorate' on 9388 4999 for more specific information or call your Obstetrician.



Stem Cell Storage


There is a private company in WA that will store stem cells collected at the birth. This is called Cell Care. You will need to contact this company directly to arrange collection and storage. No public storage is currently available in WA.



Australian Multiple Birth Association (AMBA)


Having twins (or more)? This is the official website of the Multiple Birth Association





It is difficult to get unbiased information regarding newborn circumcision in Australia. The title link takes you to the official statement and information put out by the Royal Australian College of Physicians.  Although it is generally not recommended by the medical profession, parents are at liberty to have their son circumcised as a newborn if they wish. Many hospital groups (including Ramsay Healthcare and St John of God Healthcare) will not allow the procedure to be undertaken in their facilities. The Perth Circumcision Clinic is run by a very experienced GP Dr Leon Levitt and provides a safe service once you have been discharged from hospital.  Another option is Gentle Procedures Clinic. Please discuss this further with your Obstetrician or Paediatrician.

Whooping Cough (Pertussis)

This is a bacterial infection spread from person to person through the air. Whooping Cough can be serious and life-threatening, particularly in children under the age of 12 months. It is therefore recommended that pregnant women get a dose of pertussis vaccine during the 3rd trimester of every pregnancy to protect their newborn from pertussis. As an extra layer of precaution, it is also suggested that your partner (and those family members who will be close to the baby when it is born) have a pertussis vaccine during the pregnancy if they haven't had a booster within 5 years.  Please contact your GP for this.


This is a viral disease spread through the air and occurs usually between the months of April and August. Pregnant women who get the 'flu can become extremely unwell due to the alteration in their immune system. It is therefore recommended that all women have an influenza vaccine during their pregnancy. Babies born in 'flu season are also at risk. Your vaccination during the pregnancy will provide the baby with protection via antibodies through the placenta and breast milk.

Zika virus

This is a virus spread by a very specific type of mosquito (and rarely through sexual activity). There is no vaccine. Infection in a pregnant woman can cause severe birth defects. It is extremely rare in Australia but prevalent on some areas around the world. There is informative and up-to-date information and advice via the Australian Government Department of Health website


Non Invasive Prenatal Testing (NIPT)


During pregnancy, some of the DNA from the baby crosses into the mother's bloodstream. It is now possible to look at this DNA and screen the baby for certain chromosomal abnormalities including Down Syndrome. NIPT is a simple blood test that can be done from 10 weeks gestation. It is more accurate than First Trimester Screening but still not 100%. Although readily available, it is expensive and the cost is not subsidized by either Medicare or your private health insurance. A referral is needed from either your GP or Obstetrician. There are several companies offering this test:



Percept or Panorama can be done via Aurora Imaging

Genetic Carrier Screening

There are many inherited genetic diseases that couples may be unknowingly carrying. The 3 most common are Cystic Fibrosis, Spinal Muscular Atrophy and Fragile X. A simple blood test is available to screen for these 3 diseases but it is best to do this test BEFORE you get pregnant. Talk to your GP or Obstetrician if you would like to be tested. There are also more extensive tests looking for a multitude of other (but rarer) genetic disorders. You may like to find out more at McKenzie's Mission.




MORE TO COME...........