PSANZ-SANDA undertakes activities to improve clinical practice across maternity hospitals aimed at reducing stillbirth and providing optimal care for parents whose baby is stillborn. 

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Improving Perinatal Mortality Review & Outcomes Via Education (IMPROVE) Workshops

Death of a baby is a devastating event for both the families and the professionals looking after them. In order to try to answer the questions raised by such deaths, a structured approach is required. Prior to attending an IMPROVE workshop, many health care professionals report feeling ill equipped to handling these issues and the workshop aims to provide tools to help the family and the healthcare facility at this time.

Providing education for health care professionals on how to use the Perinatal Society of Australia and New Zealand's (PSANZ) Clinical Practice Guideline for Perinatal Mortality is crucial to ensuring mothers and families receive the best care in the hospital setting. The Australian and New Zealand Stillbirth Alliance (ANZSA) in collaboration with the PSANZ Perinatal Mortality Group has developed an educational program for maternity health care professionals: IMproving Perinatal and Review and Outcomes Via Education (IMPROVE).

IMPROVE covers appropriate practices around principles of bereavement care, communicating with parents about autopsy, clinical examination, placental and post-mortem examination, investigation, classification, and audit of stillbirth. If you would like to host an education session at your hospital please contact your relevant regional coordinator or email the National IMPROVE Coordinator,


The IMPROVE workshop utilises the Structured, Clinical, Objective, Referenced, Problem-orientated, Integrated and Organised (SCORPIO) educational model designed for skills training. This involves small groups of learners rotating around six interactive learning stations that are each facilitated by an experienced educator. The principle of incorporating best evidence content and using best evidence teaching methods is fundamental to the course design. 

IMPROVE involves:

  1. A short introductory lecture
  2. Six teaching stations
  3. Formative Assessment

Workshops are four hours in duration and are delivered by trained educators.

Who should attend?

The workshops are designed for health care professionals including obstetricians, midwives, neonatal nurses, neonatologists, pathologists, bereavement specialists, social workers, or those interested from a policy or public health perspective. IMPROVE workshops provide an opportunity for participants to understand the PSANZ Perinatal Mortality Guidelines in an interactive way. 

IMPROVE is a national program

To date IMPROVE has trained over 1,200 health care professionals across Australia and New Zealand and is coordinated through the PSANZ-SANDA Coordinating Centre located at the Mater Medical Research Institute. A central register of all workshops held, IMPROVE participants, and IMPROVE pre- and post-workshop evaluations are maintained at the PSANZ-SANDA Coordinating Centre. The content of the IMPROVE Program is modified slightly for each region to ensure that the information provided is consistent with local processes. These modifications, which are largely to incorporate local forms and contact persons, will be made in consultation with the IMPROVE regional coordinator and approved by the ANZSARC. ANZSARC oversees the revisions to the IMPROVE Program and associated materials consulting the relevant Regional Coordinators to ensure the program continues to meets local needs.

IMPROVE involves

1. A short introductory lecture
2. Six teaching stations
3. Formative Assessment