Approximately 140,000 babies are born each year in Ontario. Nearly all of these infants will receive ongoing pediatric care through their growth from newborn to early childhood. Current data suggests that up to 25% of children starting senior kindergarten have a developmental issue that could have been detected and resolved sooner.
To address this concern, Ontario now supports a standardized Enhanced 18-Month Well-Baby Visit. This comprehensive check-up assesses developmental milestones in the areas of speech, motor skills, emotion, socialization, behavior, nutrition, and parenting to ensure every child has the best possible start.
The forms currently used to capture this information from both parents and healthcare providers are the Nipissing District Developmental Screen (NDDS) and the Rourke Baby Record (RBR).
Key aspects of the Enhanced 18-Month Well-Baby Visit Project included:
- Integrating updated, electronic versions of the NDDS and RBR into physician’s electronic medical records (EMR)
- Working with selected Electronic Medical Record (EMR) vendors to develop and integrate clinical support tools and informational patient communications into an EMR system, to guide and assist physicians in delivering care
- Transmitting the Enhanced 18-Month Well-Baby Visit data to the Better Outcomes Registry & Network (BORN), using eHealth HIAL services
- Evaluating the clinical impact of EMR integration and enhancements on the 10 participating family health teams
Key project goals were:
- To support early childhood development through integration of the forms with associated best practices into provincial EMRs
- To improve the quality of care and screening provided to preschool-aged children in Ontario
- To ensure that at-risk children are identified for appropriate follow-up care
- To develop tools to measure the developmental milestones achieved for 18-month-olds
The Enhanced 18-Month Well-Baby Visit Project provides an opportunity to improve patient care for children in Ontario, while meeting a key goal of Ontario’s eHealth Strategy to ensure that healthcare providers have timely access to the information they need.
This project went live in September, 2013.