Pilot Community Health and Developmental Screening to Benefit 300 Children


A child getting her height measured at an inaugural community health and developmental screening event in Boon Lay.
Photo: Facebook/Minister Desmond Lee

Research has shown that a child’s early years are fundamentally important in shaping his physical, cognitive and social development. In addition, children from vulnerable families are at greater risk of developmental challenges as compared to their peers.

With a vision to enable every child to have a good start in life regardless of his family circumstances, Neighbourhood Health Service Kids (NHS Kids), with the support of Temasek Foundation Cares, is running a 2-year community screening and intervention pilot programme that aims to provide early identification of medical or developmental needs of children and reconnect the needy with healthcare and social agencies.

As part of the programme, NHS Kids and the Early Childhood Development Agency (ECDA) jointly organised a large scale community health and developmental screening event on 30 June – 1 July 2018, which offered free screening to children aged six and below residing in rental flats in the Boon Lay Drive area.

The event was made possible with the efforts of more than 300 volunteers – medical, nursing and social work students from local tertiary institutions – who gave their time and expertise in providing the screening services. Close collaboration among multiple partners across the healthcare, early childhood and social service agencies were also critical in providing holistic support to the children and their families.

Apart from the screening services, parents at the event had the opportunity to learn about strategies to better support their child’s growth and development, such as in the areas of child nutrition and vaccination. Additionally, parents whose children were identified to have medical and social needs at the screening event were referred to healthcare and social services for support, as well as relevant community resources; NHS Kids will continue to support these families through follow-up home visits or phone calls.

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Did you know…

Good nutrition in the first 1,000 days between pregnancy and a child’s 2nd birthday can lay the foundation for health, development, and even prosperity of the next generation.

The Centre for Community Child Health (CCCH) at the Murdoch Children’s Research Institute has published The First Thousand Days: An Evidence Paper that collates international evidence for the significance of the first 1000 days and examines the impact of early experiences on all aspects of a child’s development.

The Paper is available online for public viewing: https://www.rch.org.au/ccch/first-thousand-days/

Infographic: CCCH

About Temasek Foundation Cares

Temasek Foundation Cares is a non-profit philanthropic organisation set up by Temasek and sponsored through Temasek Trust.

Temasek Foundation Cares funds and supports meaningful and innovative community-based programmes for the benefit of Singaporeans. It aims to contribute to the well-being, dignity and livelihood of needy individuals, families and communities by building people, building communities, building capabilities and rebuilding lives.