This program is modelled on Hawaii’s Healthy Start Program and had four components: the systematic screening of families of newborns to determine those families or mothers at risk of abuse or neglect; a series of home visits; informal community support; and improved coordination of services. The project took place in the rural Pipestone Health District, between Regina and the Manitoba border. A total of 136 mothers was screened. Of the 26 found to have a positive assessment, 18 enrolled in the program. These families were primarily headed by single mothers, of whom about two thirds were under the age of 25. The majority were unemployed and had education below grade 12, indicating that the project seemed to be hitting its target audience. The program is continuing and has received partnership funds from SaskTel. The report notes the challenge of providing the program within cost to a rural environment, where extensive travel is needed.
This project was supported by the Health Transition Fund, which was created in 1997 to provide support for evidence-based decision-making in health care reform by supporting pilot and evaluation projects which test innovative approaches to health care delivery. The views expressed herein do no necessarily represent the official policy of federal, provincial, or territorial governments.