National’s 1st 1000 days package

has released a nice little policy for supporting families for the first 1,000 days of a child’s life. The parts are:

  1. A $3,000 entitlement to commission services to support their child’s first 1,000 days of development (up to $6,000 for high need babies)
  2. Enhanced screening pre and post birth
  3. An entitlement to three days stay in hospital after birth
  4. An electronic child’s health passport
  5. Paid parental leave flexibility so both parents can take it at the same time
  6. Establish a National Centre for Child Development

The type of services parents can spend their $3,000 on include:

  • Specialist support including lactation consultants, sleep specialists and pelvic health practitioners
  • Additional paid parental leave
  • More ECE hours for older siblings
  • Home-based visits from health professionals
  • Registration with Lead Maternity Carers

National explains:

This new funding, allocated per child rather than directly to service providers, will mean that parental demand will determine which
services receive how much of the additional money. We believe this is a better way to allocate funds than it simply being up to Ministers to choose their preferred options.

The flexibility of having the funding follow the parents is great.

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