MONCTON (GNB) – The provincial government is investing $350,000 in the establishment of a social pediatrics demonstration site.

“Social pediatrics promotes a multisectoral, interdisciplinary approach that takes into account the 12 determinants of health simultaneously to meet a variety of needs of children and their families,” said Health Minister Benoît Bourque.

The demonstration site will be located in Memramcook and the services will be offered to vulnerable children from families in neighbouring communities of southeastern New Brunswick, including Kent County.

“The social pediatrics approach focused on the needs and strengths of children and their community is a perfect fit with the intrinsic values of the Vitalité Health Network,” said Vitalité president and CEO Gilles Lanteigne. “This first social pediatrics centre will enable us to intervene proactively with a sometimes vulnerable clientele and their families. We will thus be contributing to an improvement in public health as stipulated in our 2017-2020 strategic plan.”

The centre will assess the child’s overall situation and make a medical and social diagnosis to achieve the following objectives:

  • identify the cause of the child’s difficulties and those experienced by the child’s family;
  • establish the needs, determine the strengths, and ensure respect of the rights of the child;
  • mobilize resources that intervene with the family;
  • engage community members with respect to the care provided to the young person and the support made available to the family; and
  • develop a concerted action plan for each child.

Social pediatrics complements the work of other organizations that work in the field of social development, law, education, and health, including integrated service delivery.

Funding allocated by the Department of Health and the Department of Education and Early Childhood Development will be used to pay the salaries of a pediatrician and a social worker who will be hired full time to support this project.