Community Health Nurses deliver public health programs and services for people of all ages in private homes, clinics, schools and other community sites. Public Health programs and services are designed to keep people healthy and prevent injury and illness. Community Health Nurses initiate and participate in activities that support healthy lifestyle and create supportive environments within a primary health care framework. The overall goal is to protect and promote the health of individuals and communities within Labrador-Grenfell Health.
There are a number of public health programs and services offered that support healthy child development, from the prenatal period to the school-aged child. These programs and services are designed to promote healthy pregnancy, infancy, and birth, improve parenting and family supports and strengthen early childhood development. Community Health Nurses also provide Immunization and Communicable Disease control programs for young children, school-aged children and adults to help prevent and reduce the amount of contagious diseases in the school and community settings. Families are referred to these programs either by health care providers or individuals requiring care and/or services.
Specific programs offered include :
- BABIES (Before Birth and Beyond: Information, Education and Support), a prenatal education and support program for pregnancy, birth and early parenting
- Healthy Beginnings: Supporting Newborns, Young Children and Their Families
- Child Health Checks / Preschool Health Check
- Immunization Programs
In addition to delivering these specific programs, Community Health Nurses also provide parent and child health services which include:
- Breastfeeding support (Hyperlink to Heather Gate’s section on website)
- Anticipatory guidance and information for parent and child health topics such as infant feeding, growth and development, guiding children’s behavior, safety and injury prevention and other general parenting questions.
- School health services
- Other programs and services to families on an individual or group basis as needed.
Community Health Nurses provide breastfeeding education to prenatal and postnatal clients. Community Health Nurses provide extensive breastfeeding support through home visits and telephone visits with clients. In some communities, breastfeeding support groups are offered through Family Resource Centers.
In addition to providing a variety of programs and services to support childbearing families and families with young children, Community Health Nurses also work with schools to promote the optimal health and developmental potential of children and youth. Community Health Nurses play a key role in providing comprehensive health services to children and youth in schools using a variety of means such as health education, one-on-one interventions and broader population-based health promotion strategies.
Community Health Nurses also play an important role in health promotion and work closely with the primary health care team to address the health needs of the community.