KidsInclusive at Kingston Health Sciences Centre (KHSC), formerly known as the Child Development Centre, is slated to take over the operation of three early child development programs currently run by Kingston, Frontenac, Lennox and Addington (KFL&A) Public Health. With the approval of the Ministry of Children, Community and Social Services (MCCSS), the preschool speech language, blind low vision, and infant hearing programs with transfer to KidsInclusive, which is housed at Hotel Dieu Hospital, in May 2023.
According to a press release from KFL&A Public Health, these programs are already well aligned with the core services at KidsInclusive, and services disruptions are not anticipated during the transfer.
For over 50 years, KidsInclusive has provided rehabilitation and support services for children and youth in the Frontenac and Lennox & Addington counties and is well positioned to onboard these three programs and integrate these programs into the new SmartStart Hubs Initiative, Public Health stated. According to the release, the SmartStart Hub is a one-stop point of entry for families who have concerns about their child’s development and would like to explore available options and supports.
“KFL&A Public Health and KidsInclusive at KHSC are committed to working together to support a seamless transfer of these three programs for children and families, staff, contracted agencies, and community partners,” said Noella Klawitter, Director of KidsInclusive. “Children and families will notice very little change in the delivery of care, and we look forward to welcoming the preschool speech and language, blind low vision, and infant hearing programs to the KidsInclusive team.”
Public Health noted that it is anticipated that most of the staff working in these programs will transfer with the program and, at this time, will continue to work from the KFL&A Public Health main office.
A strategic decision has been made to transfer the leadership of these programs as a result of pandemic recovery planning, which indicated the need for KFL&A Public Health to shift its organizational focus to mandatory Public Health programs and services outlined in the Ontario Public Health Standards, according to the release. The three child development programs moving to KidsInclusive are not mandatory Public Health programs.
“We want to take this moment to thank the dedicated and skilled staff, strong leadership, and supportive contracted agencies and community partners for providing high quality services to children and families for the past 20 years in our communities,” said Dr. Piotr Oglaza, Medical Officer of Health for KFL&A Public Health.
More information about KidsInclusive is available on their website.