AUSTRALIA’S first regional Tresillian Residential Unit for new mothers and their babies has opened at Macksville Hospital.
Minister for Women Bronnie Taylor and Minister for Water, Property and Housing Melinda Pavey officially opened the unit on Friday 19 February.
The Tresillian unit is the first regional residential service model of its kind in regional Australia.
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Tresillian is Australia’s largest early parenting service offering professional advice, education and guidance to families with a baby, toddler or preschooler, helping generations of parents over the last 100 years.
Ms Pavey described the new regional inpatient Tresillian Residential Unit as, “A game changer for new parents and their families.”
The inpatient service is for families experiencing significant parenting challenges, that require intensive intervention and strategies to promote family health and wellbeing.
Families live in the residential unit with their baby or toddler for four nights, five days and are offered an individual parenting program by specialist staff.
The Tresillian team of child and family health nurses, psychologists, social workers, paediatricians and psychiatrists work in partnership with patients to increase confidence, resolve concerns and provide guidance and information on issues such as adjustment to parenting, breast or formula feeding, sleep and settling strategies, diet and nutrition, multiple babies, toddler behaviour, and anxiety and postnatal depression.
Approximately 360 parents and children are expected to be admitted to the new residential unit at Macksville per year.
Previously, new parents were forced to travel from regional areas to Sydney to access the Tresillian Residential Units at Canterbury, Nepean or Willoughby.
Residential Services are covered by Medicare and/or private health funds.
The new Tresillian Residential service at Macksville has been established through a partnership between Tresillian and the Mid North Coast Local Health District.
Free Tresillian Day Services where families visit a Tresillian Centre for a morning/afternoon or receive a visit from a Tresillian nurse at home are available in Coffs Harbour.
A referral from a GP or Child & Family Health Nurse is required for admission to the Day Service or Tresillian Residential Unit.
Professional advice from a Tresillian nurse can be accessed via the Tresillian Parent’s Helpline which is available seven days a week from 7am to 11pm at 1300 272 736.
By Emma DARBIN