MID446 Pharmacology for Midwives (4)

This subject builds on from undergraduate pharmacology knowledge extending it to the midwifery context. The content will help students to develop their understanding of the cellular mechanisms and physiological outcomes of drug actions and interactions on the woman and neonate during pregnancy, labour and the post postpartum period. Changes in pharmacokinetic parameters will also be explored with a focus on their influence on dosing and drug administration. In addition to prescribed and over the counter medications, this subject will consider complementary therapies as well as the impact of smoking, alcohol and illicit drug use on the woman and neonate during pregnancy and postpartum periods. The legal and ethical principles of medication management as it relates to midwifery practice will also be explored.

Subject Outlines
Current CSU students can view Subject Outlines for recent sessions. Please note that Subject Outlines and assessment tasks are updated each session.

No offerings have been identified for this subject in 2018.

Where differences exist between the Handbook and the SAL, the SAL should be taken as containing the correct subject offering details.

Subject Information

Grading System



One session


School of Nursing, Midwifery and Indigenous Health

Enrolment Restrictions

Graduate Diploma of Midwifery

Assumed Knowledge

Undergraduate nursing pharmacology.

Learning Outcomes

Upon successful completion of this subject, students should:
  • Be able to demonstrate a sound knowledge of pharmacology and pharmacokinetics associated with midwifery practice including the impact of medications, alcohol, tobacco (first and second hand) and illicit drugs on the mother, the newborn, the fetus/ placental transfers and the legal and ethical responsibilities
  • Be able to apply numeracy skills for drug calculations/administration and critically appraise a pharmacological regime for a patient during the maternal period
  • Be able to critically analyse how medications affect the physiological, biochemical and pathophysiological processes during pregnancy, birth and post natal period incorporating knowledge of pharmacokinetics
  • Be able to explain and apply the legal and ethical principles of medication management as it relates to midwifery
  • Be able to understand the role of complementary therapies in midwifery practice


This subject will cover the following topics:
  • Module 1: Pharmacokinetics - Absorption, distribution, metabolism and excretion of drugs in antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal care
  • Module 2: Physiological changes during antenatal, intrapartum and postnatal that can impact on drug effectiveness
  • Module 3: Alcohol and other drugs in midwifery practice
  • Module 4: Complementary therapies in midwifery practice


Current Students

For any enquiries about subject selection or course structure please contact Student Central or ask@csu.edu.au or phone on 1800 275 278.

Prospective Students

For further information about Charles Sturt University, or this course offering, please contact info.csu on 1800 275 278 (free call within Australia) or enquire online.

The information contained in the 2018 CSU Handbook was accurate at the date of publication: August 2018. The University reserves the right to vary the information at any time without notice.