A child health check is essential for children of all ages. They are used for monitoring the growth of your baby or child and for starting early intervention if there are certain conditions found.
Your child’s GP or health nurse offers a range of child health checks for children aged 0-12 years. This article provides information on what you can expect from these visits and how you can find a service that fits your child’s needs.
Child Health Checks
It’s recommended that newborns up to 12 years of age have regular health checks with a GP or child health nurse. During these visits, your child’s development is monitored, including:
- Height and length
- Body mass index (BMI)
- Clinical measurements (e.g. breathing, reflexes)
These will be compared to the appropriate developmental stage, and the gp or nurse will provide support and advice on things such as nutrition and physical activities. Child health clinics will not give you a medical diagnosis. However, the health nurse can refer you on to your GP who can provide you with more specialised support and references if needed.
Finding a Child Health Clinic
Child Health Clinics are a free service, but you may need to make an appointment depending on the individual clinic’s guidelines. Although each clinic can be different in what they offer, you can expect to receive free help and support with feeding and expert information on parenting and infant development. To find a child health clinic near you it is best to ask your GP or contact your local hospital for more information.
Be sure to list any questions or concerns before going in for the child health check and bring your child’s coloured Personal Health Record book to record the results.
If you need any additional advice, you can contact:
- Pregnancy, Birth and Baby Helpline for confidential and general advice about your baby within the first year (1800 882 436).
- 13 HEALTH – Ask to speak to a child health nurse for confidential health advice or breastfeeding support for your baby (13 43 25 84).
- Triple Zero for an emergency (000).
Central Queensland, Wide Bay, Sunshine Coast PHN is a not-for-profit organisation funded by the Commonwealth Department of Health to improve health outcomes of the region. The Right Place Right Time website has been created to assist you with options. If you need to find a GP to assist with a child health check, use the HealthDirect Find a Doctor tool.