Merri-bek Council's Maternal and Child Health services begin reopening to meet over 400 newest residents

11 July 2020

While in many ways the world has paused throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, one thing is for certain - newborns wait for nothing!

Our Maternal and Child Health service has continued to provide valuable support to Merri-bek’s newest residents – all 400 of them -  and their parents throughout the COVID-19 Victorian state of emergency.

And now our MCH nurses are excitedly meeting our newest Merri-bekers face-to-face as we re-open our 9 MCH sites for physical assessment of babies aged 0-8 weeks. More changes will take place in the coming months as we transition to normal practices.

From Monday 15 June, our Maternal and Child Health service will go back to providing face-to-face breastfeeding support every Wednesday to families via an appointment system at our Coburg Maternal and Child Health Centre. 

Mayor of Merri-bek, Cr Lambros Tapinos said Council’s MCH services had to quickly adapt to provide support to the families of babies born in Merri-bek during this time. 

“Having a newborn and navigating the world of parenting for the first time is difficult at the best of times. Over 400 families have welcomed the arrival of their newborns in extremely testing circumstances, and we’re proud to cater flexible services to respond to their ongoing needs.”

“Our nurses have gone above and beyond to provide extended Age and Stage consults via phone and specially set up locations for baby weigh-ins by appointment. They’ve facilitated new parent support groups online, hosting virtual guest speakers from health services including Drummond Street, Merri Health and RelateWell, and continue to run Dads groups online. One really successful response has been in setting up a mentor program to match parents with newborns up with other new local parents to build a support network.”

Amy, a local parent who was paired with a mentor, said of the program, “I am from NZ and don’t have any family in Melbourne, so I really appreciated my mentor’s advice and support. The buddy system is such a great idea and I really appreciated our nurse’s initiative to arrange this. I have had a fantastic experience with the Coburg Parents group and our nurse has been such a wonderful support.”

For more information visit or call our MCH line on 9240 1111 and select option 2.