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Our Services

Brighter Beginnings

Health and development checks in early childhood services

The Brighter Beginnings team includes nursing and allied heath staff (occupational therapist and speech pathologist).

The Brighter Beginnings team works with Early Learning Centres (Long day care centres and pre-schools) across the Central Coast, to deliver free Health and Development Checks to 4-year-olds within their Early Learning Centre.

What is included in the Checks?

We work with you and your 4-year-old child’s Early Learning Centre to provide free health and development checks, as set out in your child’s Blue Book, including:

  • Measuring your child’s growth
  • Reviewing your child’s dental needs
  • Reviewing your child’s development in communication, behaviour and social skills, fine and gross motor skills, learning and play skills
  • Support access to services that can help with any identified development or health needs
  • Support families and Early Learning Centres to address identified needs.

We do not provide immunisations as part of this service.

How to get involved

The Brighter Beginnings team is rolling out to Early Learning Centres across the Central Coast from 2024. The Brighter Beginnings will contact Early Learning Centre’s to arrange visits.

Early Learning Centres will let their families know when visits are scheduled and will hand out paperwork to parents/carers/guardians. To have your child screened at their Early Learning Centre, please complete and return the paperwork given to you by your child’s Centre. This will be provided a few weeks before the Brighter Beginnings team visit.

Please note: The checks are voluntary, and children will not be screened without a consent form being returned.

What if your child can not attend the checks?

If your child can not attend their Early Learning Centre on the scheduled day of checks OR if your child is not enrolled in an Early Learning Centre, Child and Family Health provide a range of services to support families with young children during their early developmental years.

If you would like to visit a Child and Family Health Centre to have your child checks completed, please see our Child and Family Health Centre page for locations and contact details. Alternatively, health and development checks can also be completed by your local GP.

Internal page link Child and Family Health

Why are the Checks Important?

The first 2000 days of life (from Conception to age 5) is a very important time for physical, cognitive, social, and emotional health and development. What happens in the first 2000 days has been shown to have an impact throughout life. You can watch short videos on ‘The Importance of the First 2000 Days’ to find out more on the Materity Services page.

Internal page link Maternity Services

Your child’s Blue Book uses age-specific milestones to help monitor your child’s development and to help families understand different skills for different ages. You can access an online copy of the Blue Book here:

External page link Blue Book (PDF)

To give your child the best start in life, your child should get all the important health and development checks at:

  • 1 to 4 weeks old
  • 6 to 8 weeks old
  • 6 months old
  • 12 months old
  • 18 months old
  • 2 years old
  • 3 years old
  • 4 years old 

These checks can be done at a Child and Family Health Centre by a nurse or, alternatively, health and development checks can also be completed by your local GP.

The 4-year-old checks are now being offered in Central Coast Early Learning Centres by the Brighter Beginnings Team.

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