SummaryRead the full fact sheet
- 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.
What happens at my two week maternal and child health visit?
This visit will focus on:
- feeding your baby (includes breastfeeding and bottle feeding)
- how play helps learning and development
- safety in the home
- and wellbeing
- hearing screen - the
- - red eye reflex test.
Remember, you and your nurse can talk about other issues or concerns if they come up.
Tip sheets for this visit
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 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.
How often should I visit?
You will be asked to see your maternal and child health nurse at 10 key ages and stages in your child’s health, learning and development. These include:
Families can access the service at other times by telephone or through a centre visit. Most centres offer a range of times when families can access the service. They typically operate through scheduled appointments, open consultation sessions and some after-hours appointments.