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Poster Abstracts



Vesna Božan Mihelčić

Primary Health Center Zagreb, HR
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Parents are the biggest impetus for proper growth and development of a child. Primary Health Centres would provide work based on prevention procedures that would ensure early intervention and reduce the health impact of the child.

Primary Health Centre Zagreb included members of the expert team in the early intervention team and liaised with experts in secondary health care and civilian associations. Using Baby Handling and the Guide for Monitoring Child Development, parents actively became involved in encouraging the proper growth and development of the child. The establishment of the Counselling Centre provided support for parents in foster parenting from the earliest age of their child.

The primary objective of early intervention is to prevent possible severe disability in a child with risk factors or disabilities. This ensures the quality of life of the child and his or her family members and thus the wider community. Parents have continued support from health care staff since day one of parenting.

Early intervention covers the entire population, children from the first day of life who are continuously monitored through growth and development, their parents and the wider family.

Participants involved in early intervention are members of the primary health care team, the social service and civilian associations of citizens.

Baby Handling workshops have been held since 2011. Model of Early Intervention was established in 2014. The same year begins with the implementation of the Guide for Monitoring Child Development. In 2017, Health Centre established a Counselling Centre for the promotion and growth of a healthy child.

Through the work of the Early Intervention Team, a large number of neuro-risk children have been observed and have undergone certain procedures. In children who underwent Baby Handling procedures, breastfeeding was prolonged, more regular rhythm of feeding and sleep was established, decrease in the intensity and frequency of colic, prevention of minor deviations in muscle tone and better weight progression. The implementation of the Guide for Monitoring Child Development is a concrete indicator to parents that something is wrong with their child's development and involves them actively in the diagnosis themselves.

The mentioned Programs are in accordance with the laws, strategies and plans of the Republic of Croatia. In accordance with the aforementioned, the model of early intervention is applicable throughout the Republic of Croatia.

The Early Intervention Team, Baby Handling and the Guide for Monitoring Child Development are measures of prevention and correction of neurodevelopmental disabilities that, through parental involvement, contribute to supportive parenting, family empowerment and community health development.

Establishing models of official communication and action at all levels of health care with the aim of early habilitation and continuous monitoring of neuro-risk children. The same model should include parents in every child treatment algorithm.

In a comfortable home environment and working conditions in the Counselling Centre, the interaction of the child and the parent is further encouraged to create a mutually motivating relationship that significantly affects the child's development.


How to Cite: Božan Mihelčić V. EMPOWERING PARENTS BY ESTABLISHING A MODEL OF EARLY INTERVENTION. International Journal of Integrated Care. 2021;21(S1):336. DOI:
Published on 01 Sep 2021.


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