In its biennial report issued January 10, 2012, the Canadian Pediatric Society (CPS) states that evidence is mounting that early investments in youth and children are valuable, provide a good return on investment for society and relieve some of the downstream cost of higher health costs later in life.
The report from the CPS urges governments to implement programs that will reach out to nearly 700,000 children living in poverty and reduce the economic disparities that exist in Canada. According to the CPS, many provinces and territories are taking action to improve the mental health and economic conditions of children, but there is more work to be done.
As part of the review, the report compared newborn screening and well-baby visits across Canada. Ontario, with its enhanced 18-month well-baby visiting program earned an “excellent” score; other provinces did not fare so well.