The North Queensland PHN commissioned KBC Australia to undertake a review of the early development service system in the Cairns, Townsville and Mackay Hospital and Health Service regions. The aim of the review was to develop a better understanding of the early development service system and identity opportunities to improve developmental outcomes for children in North Queensland.
The impetus of this review was, in part, evidence from the Australian Early Development Census (AEDC) and other sources, which identified that children across North Queensland experienced poor developmental outcomes compared to other children in Queensland and across Australia. KBC conducted a data analysis project as well as an extensive, localised stakeholder consultation process in each of the three regions, followed by local workshops with key stakeholders to co-design local solutions to major barriers identified during the data analysis and stakeholder consultation process.
By triangulating our quantitative data analysis with an extensive, localised stakeholder consultation process in each of the three regions, KBC identified common themes across the region, as well as specific local strengths and barriers. KBC determined that whilst the three regions differed in a number of ways, there was sufficient commonality and compatibility to develop and implement an overarching model of care for the early development service system in North Queensland. KBC provided the PHN with an approach to developing and piloting this at a local level.