One in five children in Canada lives in poverty, and the number is projected to rise for at least the next five years. Since the COVID-19 pandemic, health inequities among children and families have been exacerbated, revealing many gaps in our health and social care system.
The CHILD project examines the role of health and social care providers in addressing the social needs of children and families living in areas where resources are scarce.
Thus far, the CHILD research group has described interventions that integrate health and social care for children* in Canada. We are currently looking at existing evidence and knowledge gaps on this subject in a scoping review. In this stage of our project, we are engaging community members and service providers through focus group interviews. Our goal is to map the local resources and potentially co-design an intervention to improve local health and social services for children and their families.
By the end of this project, we will have a detailed community-based understanding of the collaboration between healthcare and social service systems. Our findings will lay the foundation for future research on the role of healthcare providers to support children’s social needs in Canada.
* The scoping review was funded by the St. Michael’s Hospital Foundation and the focus group work is funded through the Alternative Funding Plan (AFP) project grant for the Department of Pediatrics and Family Medicine.