Ms Skye Frazer-ryan1, Ms Kathleen Ford2
1Children’s Health Queensland Hospital And Health Service, Brisbane, Australia, 2Hercules Road State School, Kippa Ring, Australia
Children and families living within the Bays Cluster are experiencing a range of vulnerabilities and disadvantage, impacting on their long-term health, education and employment outcomes. One in five women smoke during pregnancy. Up to one in three children commence school with developmental vulnerabilities in at least one Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) domain. One in three children and youth have a school attendance rate at below 90%. The community is characterised by low socio-economic status and high unemployment. This cumulative disadvantage can impact a child’s long-term trajectory. Intervening early through a model of integrated care between health and education services will improve long-term outcomes.
A cross-sector response has been developed to trial an integrated model of health, education and social support within one primary school in the Bays Cluster. The model provides a tiered response to services across the birth to twelve years of age continuum. The model integrates services within the school setting including a school-based playgroup, a drop-in clinic, a GP practice, and a general pediatrician service.
The first phase of the model has integrated child health and social support services within the school-based playgroup and drop in clinic. Families attending the playgroup have increased significantly since integrating the services. Our key learnings have been developing a strong cross-sector partnership to develop the model takes time and using a phased approach when implementing the service allows us to be iterative and responsive in the models’ design.
Skye Frazer-Ryan is the Acting Team Leader for the Centre for Children’s Health and Wellbeing. Skye began her career as a paediatric speech pathologist working in Education and health services both in Queensland and overseas. Skye has been part of the Centre for Children’s Health and Wellbeing for the last ten years and is passionate about health equity and influencing the environments in which children are born, live, grow, love, learn and play.