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Health+Development

Mental health experts debate child screening

Concerns of false diagnosis and overmedicating young children have been raised ahead of a national rollout of a program to test three-year-olds for social and emotional issues. Mental Health Minister Mark Butler says safeguards are needed to ensure the government’s ...

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‘I just want her to be happy at school…’

At the heart of much of the recent COAG early childhood development strategy is the aim of promoting the best possible start in life for all Australian children. As well as promoting health and developmental outcomes, the strategy aims to ...

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Early testing of learning difficulties called for

Plans to introduce mental health checks for three-year-olds should be expanded to include a test for learning difficulties, a leading psychologist has said. Clinical psychologist Tim Hannan believes the move would stop many parents signing their children up for treatments ...

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Parents key to childhood obesity

Educating parents on healthy eating could be more effective at reducing childhood obesity than physical activity, new research shows. The study, undertaken by researchers from the universities of Newcastle and Wollongong, found that targeting parents rather than children is the ...

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Early diagnosis of problems is key: research

Children with special health care needs in early childhood may be more prone to social and learning difficulties in their first years of school, new research has found. Children with chronic physical, developmental, behavioural or emotional conditions requiring health and ...

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Early development data released

Parents will now have access to data that details how young children in their community are faring in key developmental areas. The Australian Early Development Index, released by the government on Tuesday, will also allow national comparisons to be made. ...

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Not just fun and games

Australia can now claim top spot on the world obesity ladder. Young people are spending less time playing sport, street games and physically active recreation and more time in front of the screens. Moreover, the primary school curriculum is often ...

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