New program aims to help women during pregnancy
A new service is available to help future mothers find information and health professionals. Lionel Carmant, junior minister for health and social services, announced the Quebec government’s Ma Grossesse (My Pregnancy) program in early March, explaining that it hopes to better meet the needs of pregnant women — particularly vulnerable women and families for whom the pandemic has amplified isolation.
Starting pregnancy off right
In Quebec, nearly one in four women (23.5 per cent) do not benefit from obstetric follow-up during the first trimester. This can be due to the mother’s age, social isolation, recent immigration, and those who are pregnant for the first time.
Programs such as Olo,, which provides services to disadvantaged pregnant women, and Services intégrés en périnatalité et pour la petite enfance (SIPPE), which helps vulnerable pregnant women and families, are available, but not always known to those who most need their services.
Ma Grossesse hopes to reach these women at the beginning of their pregnancies to better target their needs and offer them appropriate services as early as possible. Pregnant women can receive help finding a professional to monitor their pregnancy and be referred to obstetric follow-up appointments.
Additional services include support for quitting smoking, preparation for breastfeeding and advice and resources for early pregnancy. Women can also get information on services offered by their local CLSC, including prenatal classes and postpartum support.
Important to monitor from the start
Prenatal care is an important part of a healthy pregnancy and monitoring from the first trimester is vital. It can reduce physical or mental health problems and chances of premature birth and low birth weight. Support and follow-up adapted to the needs identified during the first months of pregnancy thus promote better health for both the mother and her child.
The Ma Grossesse service is accessible through the Health Ministry’s website. To access the services, pregnant women must complete a short form available in 11 languages: quebec.ca/en/family-and-support-for-individuals/pregnancy-and-parenthood/ma-grossesse-service
Women with special needs or those who need help filling out the form can contact their local CLSC.