Summary

  • This is usually your first visit to see a nurse at your local Maternal and Child Health centre.
  • Maternal and child health nurses work in partnership with families to care for babies and young children until they start school. The service is free for all Victorian families.
  • You will visit a maternal and child health nurse at 10 key ages and stages from birth to three and a half years.
  • Your nurse can help you with things like breastfeeding and feeding your child; sleep and settling, making sure your child is growing, learning and developing well; being a parent and looking after yourself.

This is usually your first visit to the local Maternal and Child Health centre. At this and every other key age and stage visit, you and your  nurse will discuss the growth, health and development of your baby. 

What happens at my two week maternal and child health visit?

This visit will focus on: 

Remember, you and your nurse can talk about other issues or concerns if they come up. 

Don't forget your 'green book'

When your baby was born, you should have received a copy of My Health, Learning and Development – green book. This book belongs to you and your baby and is full of information about early child development, and services and support.

Make sure you take your green book with you each time you see your nurse so you can jot down any issues, and record information on your baby's growth and development. 

If you don't have a green book, let your nurse know.

What is my baby doing at this key age and stage?

Even at this very young age, your newborn is ready to learn about the world around them. They might be:

  • spending lots of time sleeping, feeding and crying
  • grasping your fingers when you put them in your baby’s hands
  • getting startled by loud noises
  • starting to focus on faces
  • looking into your eyes.

What to tell your nurse

Please tell the nurse if your baby: 

  • is NOT making any sounds 
  • is NOT feeding well. 

Activity ideas for this key age and stage

It's never too early to help your baby learn and develop – you may like to:  

  • talk to them about what you are doing (e.g. "let's have a nice warm bath now")
  • look into their eyes and copy their expressions
  • cuddle them close to your chest
  • give them lots of skin to skin contact or try baby massage
  • talk and sing songs to them.

Have you got your baby bundle?

If you are a first-time parent (after July 2019) and live in Victoria, you may eligible to receive the Victorian Government’s baby bundle which contains nursery essentials and key parenting information and resources to support the health, development and wellbeing of your baby. 

Tell your maternal and child health nurse if you did not receive one.

Where to get help

More information

Parenting

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Maternal and child health

Parenting basics

Family structures

Communication, identity and behaviour

Raising healthy children

Common childhood health concerns

Immunisation

Keeping yourself healthy

Child safety and accident prevention

Grief and trauma

Support for parents

Content Partner

This page has been produced in consultation with and approved by: Maternal and Child Health and Parenting

Last updated: October 2019

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