Wednesday, January 04, 2012
Perth District Health Unit
Health Unit Announces Changes to its Programs for Young Families
The Health Unit is making changes to some programs and services it offers to expectant parents and for parents of children aged newborn to six. The shift in programming is being done to address community trends and budget constraints.
“We regret to announce that we are decreasing some of our services because of the pressures on our resources,” says Pat Jarvis Winhold, Public Health Manager. “However, the Health Unit remains committed to helping Perth County parents raise healthy children, especially those that may require additional support.”
The program changes are outlined below:
Healthy Babies Healthy Children (HBHC)
Home Visiting Program Cutbacks
In the past, the Health Unit offered a home visit with a public health nurse to every parent who gave birth to a baby in Perth County. This offer of a home visit will be discontinued. “We will no longer be able to offer a visit to all parents,” explains Jarvis Winhold. Instead, the Health Unit will continue its practice of phoning parents shortly after the birth of a child to see how everything is going with their new baby. “Parents that can benefit from more support will continue to receive HBHC services, if they wish,” says Jarvis Winhold.
Family Connection Cancelled
Family Connection, a drop-in program that took place at Early Years Centres, is being discontinued.
Young Parents Prenatal Program Discontinued
The prenatal classes for expecting young parents are also being cancelled. “This program was experiencing a decline in attendance, despite the positive feedback received from the parents who participated,” explains Jarvis Winhold.
Cancellation of Prenatal Health Fairs
Prenatal Health Fairs, which were held a few times each year in Stratford and Listowel, will not be taking place anymore.
In preparation for these cutbacks, the Health Unit has added services for young families to reflect the changing needs of parents in Perth County.
In July 2010, the Health Unit introduced its e-newsletter service for new parents, Giddy-up Let’s Grow, which already has more than 600 subscribers. Subscribers automatically receive age-paced information by email about child growth and development and a variety of parenting issues at regular intervals from birth to age six.
As well, it is creating two new resources as part of the Giddy-up Let’s Grow program - one to be given early in a pregnancy and one after the birth of a baby. The resources will be in a handy booklet format and are packed with important health information. The booklets will also be available online.
For more information about parenting and child health and development, parents can:
519-271-7600 ext 279