New Sault moms get a bit more helpFriday, February 01, 2013 by: SooToday.com Staff
DAVID ORAZIETTI, MPP
Orazietti announces greater support for new mothers in Sault Ste. Marie
Provincial funding helps vulnerable families get help early
SAULT STE. MARIE - The province is providing further support for an additional nursing position for the Healthy Babies Healthy Children program at Algoma Public Health, David Orazietti, MPP, announced today.
“We know that the earlier we can find families who need extra help the support they need, the more likely we are to have positive outcomes and the Healthy Babies Healthy Children program has a proven track record of supporting vulnerable families in our community,” said Orazietti. “Hiring an additional nurse to help with this important program is part of our government’s commitment to continuing to improve the health and well-being of Sault Ste. Marie’s children and families.”
The Healthy Babies Healthy Children program identifies expectant or new moms who may be at risk and helps them get the advice and services needed to give their children the best chance for healthy development.
Expectant and new mothers who need extra help are eligible for home visits from a public health nurse who can provide advice and counselling.
Every new mother in Sault Ste. Marie will also receive information about infant and child development, community resources and contacts for local services.
"In Algoma, all children and parents have access to evidence-informed programs and services which support healthy child development and effective parenting," said Connie Free, Public Health Program director with Algoma Public Health. “This provincial funding will enhance program support and allow for further collaboration with primary care providers and services, as well as universal screening of women and their families in the prenatal period and families with children from birth until school transition. The screening will identify families who can benefit from the Healthy Babies Healthy Children Program home visiting services, community programs, supports, and referrals all of which help children achieve their full potential.”
In 2003 in Ontario infants were screened for only 2 diseases, however with increased funding and support from the province infants are now screened for 27 diseases.
In addition the provincial government has increased funding for public health by 50 percent as well as provided nearly $10 million locally for new public health infrastructure.
“Healthy Babies Healthy Children provides the earliest possible opportunity to identify children and families who may be exposed to social and economic risk factors,” said Dr. Paul Roumeliotis, president, Association of Local Public Health Agencies. “The infusion of resources to this program is a true acknowledgement of its critical importance to the health and development of children in this province.”