HOME VISITING OFFERS SUPPORT TO PARENTS
With all the attention Public Health has been receiving in light of recent challenges such as SARS and West Nile Virus, it is important that the public be aware of the various health unit programs that help support and sustain healthy communities in Grey and Bruce Counties. “Healthy Babies, Health Children” in one such program. It is a prevention and early intervention program for all Ontario families with children prenatal to six years of age.
Every family in Ontario is entitled to a home visit by a public health nurse upon learning of a pregnancy and again when you bring home your new baby. A public health nurse can help answer your prenatal concerns and provide one-on-one advice in many areas. Why not take advantage of this service? The home visiting component is a great way to get answers to your questions and concerns about your new baby.
Based on the assessment done by the public health nurse during your home visit, you may also be offered a referral to the home-visiting component of this program. Healthy Babies, Healthy Children program offers continuing home visits by a public health nurse and a parent support worker. Some families may not need ongoing home visits. For those who do wish to continue with the home visiting program, the number of visits and how often depends on the needs identified by the family and the public health nurse.
Families who receive home visiting say they enjoy the one-to-one talks with their parent support worker. Many feel their visits have given them increased confidence in their parenting abilities and helped them carry out daily tasks, such as caring for their baby and organizing their day. A parent support worker empowers you with practical knowledge and useful tips, all in the comfort of your home.
By being involved with a parent support worker, a family has the ability to develop stronger parenting skills, reduce stress, and enhance life skills. Advice and support in many areas may be offered, such as safe proofing your home for your baby’s exploration, promoting healthy child development, healthy nutrition and handling the extra responsibility of a baby. Visits will increase your knowledge of community resources and help you cope with the challenges you face as a parent.
When you discover that you will soon have a new addition to your family, call Public Health Unit at 376-9420 or 1-800-263-3456 and let us help support you in raising a healthy family. Visit our web site at www.publichealthgreybruce.on.ca
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