Healthy Conversation Skills Training

Previous NZ attendees say: "Great training - can be used in every aspect of life." "I enjoyed learning new ways to communicate wiht clients to encourage more positive health outcomes." "I can see how the strands of Healthy Conversation Skills weave with the whanau ora approach."


About Healthy Conversation Skills 

Healthy Conversation Skills Training provides health professionals with invaluable skills to support clients to make behaviour changes for a healthier lifestyle. 

Healthy Conversation Skills gives health professionals the tools to support and empower women and their families to make a plan for change that fits in with their lives.  


Participants will learn:

  • How to create opportunities to discuss health behaviours  
  • Different ways to approach nutrition and physical activity conversations
  • To use open discovery questions to better understand a client or family’s situation
  • Techniques to listen, reflect and encourage clients to set their own goals.


Healthy Conversation Skills training is invaluable for all health professionals responsible for building relationships with pregnant women, whānau and parents of young children and is helpful at every contact – at clinics, home visits, on marae or as the opportunity arises.


The sessions are run as a group and seek to:      

  • Explore your current practice
  • Promote reflection
  • Engage in group problem-solving
  • Encourage you to think about what you’ll do differently
  • Revisit  plans in subsequent sessions to facilitate real and lasting learning
  • Be challenging and discover new ways of working.


Healthy Conversation Skills was originally developed by the Medical Research Council Lifecourse Epidemiology Unit at The University of Southampton.  It has been adapted for use in New Zealand.

Published evaluation papers show it has been hugely successful in teaching skills which the workforce continue to use daily more than a year after training.  It has also been shown to  increase confidence and job satisfaction in what has traditionally been a difficult area to discuss with women and families.


Enrolment information

Healthy Conversation Skills is available free-of-charge to all health practitioners and promoters in New Zealand.

Healthy Conversation Skills is accredited for professional development hours for:

  • Midwives
  • Nurses
  • GPs

It has also been embedded in Plunket's professional development framework for nurses.

Find out about upcoming courses and then register to do a course here

If a course is not scheduled in your region, please contact us to discuss holding a training day in your area.


Professional development hours / points

Healthy Conversation Skills is accredited for professional development hours for midwives, nurses and GPs.  

Midwives: The Healthy Conversation Skills workshop has been endorsed by the NZ College of Midwives for six professional development hours.


Nurses: The Healthy Conversation Skills workshop has been endorsed by the College of Nurses Aotearoa for six professional development hours.


General Practitioners: The Healthy Conversation Skills workshop has been endorsed by the Royal NZ College of General Practitioners for up to five CME credits for the General Practice Educational Programme and Maintenance of Professional Standards.


It is recommended that Healthy Conversation Skills participants also enrol in the Healthy Start Education programme to learn more about the clinical and scientific evidence behind the benefits of good nutrition and physical activity before, during and after pregnancy for a person's life-long health.