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The Better Health North Queensland (NQ) Alliance is pleased to introduce the NQ First 1,000 Days Framework for northern Queensland — which represents our commitment to improving maternal and child health outcomes for the communities in our region.

The aim of Better Health NQ is to work collaboratively to achieve our vision that ‘northern Queenslanders will be as healthy as all Queenslanders.’ One of the initial priorities for the Alliance was to develop a First 1,000 Days Framework to improve outcomes at three levels — for individuals; the population; and across the service system.

Better Health NQ is a regional partnership that works with priority stakeholders through an Alliance governance group comprising of:

  • the five North Queensland HHSs
  • NQPHN
  • Queensland Aboriginal and Islander Health Council
  • Health and Wellbeing Queensland
  • Consumer Partners
  • Queensland Ambulance Service
  • Queensland Health.

The Framework was developed through a Project Working Group of subject matter experts representing the following organisations:

  • the five North Queensland HHSs
  • NQPHN
  • local Aboriginal Community Controlled Health Organisations (ACCHOs)
  • Health and Wellbeing Queensland
  • Children’s Health Queensland.

More information on the alliance can be found here.

The First 1,000 Days Framework

The first 1,000 days of life is a critical time in a person’s life, with early experiences being a predictor of health, development, education, and social outcomes — both in childhood and later in life. The development of this framework is an important milestone and represents what is needed to reduce health inequities in the region and ensure all northern Queensland children have a healthy start to life.

The framework covers:

  • promoting good health in the pre-conception period
  • caring for mothers and families during pregnancy, birthing, and the perinatal period
  • providing the best start to life for children up to two years.

It also outlines the system enablers needed for effective maternal and child health services. 

Reflecting Better Health NQ’s commitment to working in partnership across the system and with communities, this framework has been developed through consultation with consumers, community members, and stakeholders across the health and social services sectors.

Over the coming years, the framework will guide service planning, commissioning, delivery, and review across northern Queensland, and will be rolled out at scale to ensure consistent approaches to achieving maternal and child health outcomes for our region. As we progress, the framework will be extended to the first 3,000 days of life. 

We look forward to commencing implementation of priority strategies by developing a joint implementation strategy that will focus on a first horizon of 1-2 years. We will continue to keep communities and stakeholders involved in the process, as we work together through Better Health NQ to deliver the NQ First 1,000 Days Framework

View the NQ First 1,000 Days Framework

First 1,000 Days Framework
17 February 2023