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OBGY712 Pre and Early Pregnancy Care

2021 information for papers will be published in early September. 

Contraception, pre-pregnancy counselling, antenatal education, the provision of antenatal care, early pregnancy complications to include miscarriage, ectopic pregnancy, hyperemesis, grief reaction, fetal abnormality, differential diagnosis of lower abdominal pain in early pregnancy.

OBGY 712 covers the care of women who are planning for pregnancy or who wish to avoid pregnancy. It deals with the first trimester of pregnancy and common complications.

Paper title Pre and Early Pregnancy Care
Paper code OBGY712
Subject Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology
EFTS 0.1500
Points 18 points 18 points
Teaching period(s) 1st Non standard period (4 February 2020 - 25 March 2020), 2nd Non standard period (30 June 2020 - 19 August 2020)
Domestic Tuition Fees (NZD) $1,714.50
International Tuition Fees (NZD) $6,217.80

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OBGX 712
Limited to
(i) This paper is designed for the continuing professional education of health professionals involved in the provision of women's health care, and is also a compulsory paper for the Postgraduate Diploma in Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology. (ii) Limited to 30 students per semester. (iii) For more information:

Recommended for general practitioners (GPs) and GP registrars and sexual health physicians, and those doctors considering a future in sexual and reproductive health, general practice, obstetrics and gynaecology, paediatrics or emergency medicine. Suitable for midwives, practice nurses, family planning and public health nurses.

Enrolments for this paper are limited and require departmental permission. View more information about limitations of enrolment.

Amanda Phillips: Women's and Children's Health Distance Learning Co-ordinator
Tel: 03 470 9688
Teaching staff

Convenor: Dr Celia Devenish
Teaching Staff: Emma Macfarlene, Dr Celia Devenish, Dr Peter Abels, Kay Faulls

Paper Structure
One of four distance-taught papers that are offered as part of Postgraduate Certificate in Women's Health (PGCertWHlth) and Postgraduate Diploma in Obstetrics and Medical Gynaecology (PGDipOMG) programmes
Teaching Arrangements

Consists of six 2-hour Tuesday evening audioconferences on Zoom conducted fortnightly over twelve weeks

N1: Tuesday 4 February  - Thursday, 19 March 2020
Examination: Wednesday, 25 March 2020, in the evening, in the town/city you enrolled as your semester address

N2: Tuesday, 30 June - Thursday, 13 August 2020
Examination: Wednesday, 19 August 2020, in the evening, in the town/city you enrolled as your semester address

Introduction to Obstetrics and Gynaecology, by Professor Cindy Farquhar and Associate Professor Helen Roberts, University of Auckland
Graduate Attributes Emphasised
Lifelong learning, Scholarship, Communication, Critical thinking.
View more information about Otago's graduate attributes.
Learning Outcomes

Fertility Regulation/Contraception

  • Discuss the laws pertaining to family planning matters in New Zealand.
  • Explain the changes during a woman’s menstrual cycle.
  • Describe fertility and contraception in the puerperium.
  • Discuss methods of ‘natural family planning’ with women.
  • List the different forms of contraception currently available in New Zealand.
  • Define the failure rate for each form of contraception in terms of the Pearl Index, and contrast the user failure rate with the theoretical failure rate.
  • List the indications, contraindications, mode of action and side effects of each form of contraception available.
  • Apply the above knowledge to assist the individual or couple in reaching a decision on the most suitable contraceptive methods for their particular circumstances.
  • Describe any specific investigations needed before starting any particular method of contraception.
  • Detail specific measures needed to deal with complications of any particular method.
  • Demonstrate appreciation of varying attitudes towards pregnancy and contraception from personal, societal, religious, cultural, and political perspectives — and how these attitudes may change with age.
  • List the principles involved in teaching a woman how to take the COC and POP.
  • Counsel men and women on the correct use of condoms.
  • Inform clients regarding the failure rates of condoms and what can be done to maximise efficacy.
  • Counsel women on the evidence of effectiveness and need for emergency contraception to allow them to make an informed choice regarding use.

Pre-conceptual Counselling

  • List the components of pre-conceptual counselling, including: stopping of contraception, timing of intercourse for conception, identification of risk factors in the past medical and obstetric history and examination, investigations, immune status, advice regarding folic acid ingestion, types of obstetric care in NZ
  • Identify the types of medical conditions where pre pregnancy assessment is advisable prior to planning a pregnancy.

Early Pregnancy - Normal Pregnancy

  • List the early pregnancy anatomical and physiological changes.
  • Describe early fetal and placental development.
  • Outline the history, examination and investigations required at a first antenatal visit.
  • Describe the counselling required for progress through a normal pregnancy including the effects of psychosocial drugs, alcohol, smoking, gestational weight gain, infection, exercise, and travel.
  • Give women advice on dietary supplementation in pregnancy.
  • Describe the model of maternity care in New Zealand.

Early Pregnancy - Abnormalities

  • List the causes of first trimester bleeding.
  • Diagnose and initiate management of miscarriages, ectopic pregnancy, molar pregnancy, the grief reaction, and describe the follow-up of these conditions.
  • Describe the diagnosis and management of hyperemesis gravidarum.
  • Construct a differential diagnosis for lower abdominal pain in the antenatal period.
  • Give news of pregnancy loss sensitively with regard to the individual.

Early Pregnancy - Screening

  • Outline the principles of screening for disease.
  • Outline the basic principles of inheritance of disease.
  • Describe the importance of the timing of the various factors that may cause abnormal fetal development.
  • Describe the methods of screening for fetal chromosome abnormalities available in New Zealand and be aware of the management issues and counselling involved.
  • Compare the timing, nature and risks of chorionic villus sampling and amnio­centesis.

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1st Non standard period (4 February 2020 - 25 March 2020)

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system

2nd Non standard period (30 June 2020 - 19 August 2020)

Teaching method
This paper is taught through Distance Learning
Learning management system