The Government of Canada releases new postpartum guide for families

A comprehensive guide on postpartum, maternal and child health

Ottawa, ON, June 1, 2023 /CNW/ – Having a baby can be a happy and wonderful time, but it can also bring worry and uncertainty. It is normal for all new parents to have questions and concerns as they go through this life-changing experience. Parents need trusted sources of information on postpartum and baby health so they can make informed decisions about what works best for the wellbeing of their family.

Today, the Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos, Minister of Health and the Honourable Carolyn Bennett, Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health, announced the publication of Your Guide to Postpartum Health and Caring for Your Baby. The guide provides guidance and resources for parents and families on matters relating to care after giving birth, including physical health, mental health, family health, nutrition, and breastfeeding. The guide also provides information on pregnancy and infant loss.

The guide is the newest in a series of publications by the Public Health Agency of Canada (PHAC) dedicated to maternal and newborn health with a focus on pregnancy, as well as the preconception and postpartum periods. Parents’ efforts to adopt and maintain healthy behaviours across these critical life periods can yield positive long-term impacts on the health and wellbeing of the whole family.

PHAC continues to work in collaboration with provinces, territories, and community-based organizations to support parents and families on the best practices for newborn and child health. The Agency invests over $80 million annually in the Community Action Program for Children and the Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program, to support healthy pregnancies, positive parenting, and healthy child development. These programs continue to be key avenues for reaching families in challenging situations with important public health information and supports. 


“Being a parent to a new baby is a wonderful experience that comes with a lot of new challenges and a lot of different advice. The Guide to Postpartum Health and Caring for your Baby offers accurate information and resources all one in place to help you make decisions that work best for you, your new baby, and your family. This new guide is a part of our continuing efforts to support parents to live healthier lives and to foster children’s health and wellbeing as they grow and develop.”

The Honourable Jean-Yves Duclos
Minister of Health

“Initiatives supporting the mental health and wellbeing of new mothers, parents, and families are truly important to the lifelong wellbeing of their children. This new resource provides accurate information to help parents make informed decisions on taking care of themselves, their newborn, and their family. I highly recommend this guide to all new parents as they navigate the complex challenges of their new responsibilities.”

The Honourable Carolyn Bennett
Minister of Mental Health and Addictions and Associate Minister of Health

Quick Facts
  • Free printed copies of Your Guide to Postpartum Health and Caring for Your Baby can be ordered online on the PHAC website.
  • The complimentary Your Guide To a Healthy Pregnancy is PHAC’s popular print resource, and provides accessible, evidence-based information to encourage healthy behaviours during pregnancy.
  • The Family Centred Maternity and Newborn Care: National Guidelines for professionals includes a chapter on postpartum care, focuses on providing guidance related to family-centred evidenced-based care for postpartum people, their newborn and family.
  • Breastfeeding is important for the short-term and long-term health of babies, young children and parents. Experts recommend that babies are exclusively breastfed for the first 6 months of life. Results from the 2022 Breastfeeding Progress Report, show that, while most babies in Canada are breastfed initially, far fewer (35%) reach the goal of being exclusively breastfed to six months. The largest decline in breastfeeding occurs in the first month after birth.

SOURCE Public Health Agency of Canada

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