Government Committed to Child Health and Parenting Service Mon 14 May 2012 Michelle O'Byrne Minister for Children The Minister for Children, Michelle O'Byrne, said the State Government remains absolutely committed to providing quality health care for mothers and their new babies. Ms O'Byrne said services are constantly reviewed to ensure they are delivered in line with best practice. "We reviewed the Child Health and Parenting Service and found that the service we currently offer, notwithstanding its long history, is not reaching all Tasmanians," she said. "While maintaining its universality, our intention is to focus the service on ensuring no children and families drop through the cracks. "We are not restricting access to CHAPS. There has been no reduction in funding for CHAPS and no parent with a child will be turned away." Ms O'Byrne said research shows Tasmania's most vulnerable parents and their children are least likely to use the service. "Our services review shows while 97 per cent of families with a newborn enrol in CHAPS, by 3.5 years attendance tapers to about 40 per cent. "CHAPS is a universal service and it will remain a universal service but in its current form it is not reaching many Tasmanians who need it - we aim to address that. "Is Ms Petrusma suggesting that, knowing this, we should do nothing? Is she suggesting that we should not direct our efforts to where they can do the most good?" Ms O'Byrne said trials were currently underway to develop new models for running New Parents Groups in consultation with all relevant stakeholders.