The Ministry of Health (MOH) funds an initiative addressing the primary care and specialist sector response to children’s challenging behaviour. It is well documented that prevention and early intervention is crucial to deterring the development of serious child and/or family problems. The primary health care sector is well positioned to respond to the early onset of common parenting challenges either by providing support to parents or referring to appropriate supports. Evidence-based behaviour family interventions have good scientific support for promoting children’s development and tackling children's behaviour. The Triple P interventions being offered in the primary care sector and the more intensive parenting supports such as Incredible Years available in the four pilot DHB regions work together to form the foundations of the inter-agency, inter-sector response to early childhood behaviour challenges.
The Triple P – Positive Parenting Program is a suite of evidence-based behaviour family interventions of varying intensities with different delivery formats. This system is designed to meet the differing needs of families who vary in the level of intervention they need and the style of delivery they prefer. There are five levels of Triple P where higher level numbers represent more intense interventions. Delivery formats range from information disseminated through media channels, group formats, one-to-one delivery, and self-directed options (including Online). The MOH is funding training and implementation support for Level 3 Triple P programmes – Primary Care Triple P and Triple P Discussion Groups, designed for delivery in primary care and Level 1 Universal Triple P (the media campaign, Stay Positive!) This media campaign communicates both positive parenting information and information about the Triple P supports available to parents in their community. Achieving the project objectives requires the co-ordination of a number of activities. Werry Workforce Whāraurau has been contracted by the MOH to coordinate the project’s key activities.
- Grow the primary care workforce in providing evidence-based parenting support.
- Increase the number of parents accessing evidence-based parenting support.
- Establish smoother pathways between early intervention and more intensive parenting supports.
- Ultimately promote family/whānau wellbeing.
Considerable progress has been made on all project objectives:
- Over five hundred primary care practitioners are now trained to provide Primary Care Triple P and Triple P Discussion Groups. Practitioners report increased confidence, efficacy, and proficiency in this workforce delivering parenting support.
- Increased parent access to evidence-based parenting support. Over 6000 parents/caregivers across the Bay of Plenty, Mid Central, Counties Manukau, and Waitemata District Health Board areas have participated in Triple P primary care programmes offered by the practitioners trained within this Ministry funded initiative. Many parents are more confident and find positive change occurs for children, parents, and wider family.
- Most importantly, parents and caregivers report that they feel better about their parenting, that they have better relationships with their children, that there is better communication with their children and partners. Many tell us that these changes have happened quickly. Some parents feel more prepared for later developmental stages.
Stay Positive is part of a communications strategy aiming to raise awareness of parenting issues and de-stigmatise asking for parenting help.
Parents in the four DHB regions can access lots of helpful information about Triple P and Positive Parenting.
Trained Triple P Practitioners can access information and resources to assist their delivery of the programme.
Non trained providers can learn more here too.