Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Program (SPIMHP)

The Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Program is a non-clinical service providing support to Western Australian (WA) health and community professionals who work with families as well as consumers. The program includes education and training, health promotion initiatives, service coordination and support for clinical networks and research.


Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion and Prevention Plan 2023-2027

The Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion and Prevention Plan (2023 – 2027) was developed by SPIMHP following an extensive literature review and consultation with key stakeholders from across a variety of agencies inclusive of health professionals and consumers. The resource aims to guide organisations across WA on how to best support families during the perinatal and infant period.

Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion and Prevention Plan 2023 - 2027 (PDF)


Infant Mental Health Awareness Week: Bonding Before Birth

Bonding Before Birth #IMHAW2023Infant mental health is an often overlooked and misunderstood subject. Infant Mental Health Awareness Week provides an annual opportunity to discuss the importance of babies’ mental health and wellbeing as well as some of the issues that affect it.

Research shows that the experiences and relationships we have in the earliest years of our lives, including before birth, impact on the development of our brains. Stress and adversity experienced during pregnancy can have a negative impact on babies’ physical and mental health as they grow, but this doesn’t have to be the case. The services in place to support mothers, birthing people, partners and families in pregnancy can make a huge difference. Infant Mental Health Awareness Week is hoping to increase awareness of the importance of bonding before birth, and build support for the services which we know can help.

We encourage all agencies, organisations, families and communities to promote Infant Mental Health Awareness Week, for more information visit Parent-Infant Foundation website (external site)


Education and training

Training is provided in person, on-line and / or via videoconferencing. The training sessions focus on the importance of screening and referrals. Professional development opportunities for health and community professionals are also offer via symposiums, forums and workshops.

Antenatal Risk Questionnaire (ANRQ) (PDF)

This training is designed to introduce the ANRQ, a validated screening tool used to identify psychosocial risk factors associated with increased risk of developing a mental health disorder, such as depression or anxiety, in the perinatal period.

Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS) (PDF)

This training is designed to assist health professionals and others in using the EPDS. It includes a presentation, interactive discussion, role plays and audio visual material with a focus on shared experience and experiential learning.

Perinatal Anxiety Disorders training (PDF)

This training provides participants with an introduction to anxiety in the perinatal period. Prevalence and types of anxiety disorders are explored, along with engagement, screening and treatment options.

Serious mental illness training  

This training has been developed for mental health clinicians and other health staff working with women with a serious mental illness diagnosis in the perinatal period. It aims to increasing awareness and understanding of the complex challenges that women, families and clinicians face during the perinatal period.

Kimberley Mum's Mood Scale training (KMMS) (external site)

The KMMS was developed to be a culturally secure approach to screening for depression and anxiety during the perinatal period for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander women. The aim of the KMMS is to identify concerns as they arise so women can receive appropriate support quickly. This in turn minimises the potential impact, severity and duration of the effects of perinatal depression and anxiety on the mother, child and family.

Free KMMS training module (external site).


Health Promotion

Perinatal and infant mental health promotion aims to keep people well and promote positive mental health and resilience. Prevention and early intervention are key components of perinatal and infant mental health promotion.

SPIMHP’s health promotion activities aim to:

  • Keep people well and promote positive mental health and resilience
  • Support early identification, intervention and social support by:
    • Provide access to resources and services to support mental health and wellbeing during the perinatal period
    • Provide access to culturally appropriate screening tools


Key SPIMHP health promotion activities include:

  • Developing the Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion and Prevention Plan.
  • Distributing a bimonthly Perinatal and Infant Mental Health newsletter for health and community workers.
  • Maintaining a consumer website with resources and information.
  • Producing the SPIMHP booklet: Finding Help before and after baby arrives (PDF) (2021) which provides an extensive list of services from across WA for new or expecting mums and families.
  • Coordinating the WA Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion Network which brings together individuals and organisations who work in the area of perinatal and infant mental health and health promotion. To join please email
  • Producing the SPIMHP patient information: Bonding with your baby flyer (PDF) and Bonding with your baby poster (PDF)


Other - Severe mental illness support

The KEMH Perinatal Mental Health Services for Women with Severe Mental Illness (PDF) is an integrated pregnancy, postnatal and mental health service for WA women with severe mental illness. Services include:

In addition to keeping people well and promoting positive mental health and resilience, the SPIMHP works in collaboration with stakeholders who work in the area of perinatal mental health and mental health to support early identification, intervention and social support. Two key documents are:

  • The Statewide Perinatal and Infant Mental Health Promotion and Prevention Plan (PDF) aims to promote universal screening and early identification at regular time-points during pregnancy, the postnatal period, infancy and early childhood. The Plan has been based on the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) approval of recommendations in COPE’s Mental Health Care in the Perinatal Period: Australian Clinical Practice Guideline (2017) and the National Clinical Practice Guidelines Pregnancy Care (2020).
  • A referral pathway for perinatal mental health (PDF), for use with the Edinburgh Postnatal Depression Scale (EPDS), to provide potential referral options for postnatal women in relation to their EPDS score.


Statewide coordination

The SPIMHP role in statewide coordination includes:

  • Contributing to the development of mental health policies and guidelines relevant to the perinatal period.
  • Working with Health Service Providers, non-Government organisations and other stakeholders to support service improvement in the perinatal period.

The Perinatal Mental Health Services located at King Edward Memorial Hospital offer specialist support to women with a history of serious and complex mental health problems during the perinatal period. The services include a pre-conception clinic, and antenatal and postnatal support:

Last Updated: 10/06/2024