Supporting healthy pregnancies: We all have a role to play
To mark Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) Awareness Day on Sept. 9, the government is asking Albertans to help women avoid alcohol if they are trying to conceive or during pregnancy.
No amount of alcohol is safe during pregnancy. In Canada, prenatal exposure to alcohol is a leading cause of preventable brain damage and birth defects. This exposure is also one of the top three reasons for developmental delays in children. According to the Institute of Health Economics, approximately 46,000 Albertans are living with FASD.
To support those living with FASD, the Government of Alberta provides funding to 12 FASD service networks across Alberta. These networks offer the Parent-Child Assistance Program, which provides 25 communities with support for women with drug and alcohol addictions.
“Every child deserves the opportunity to live a healthy, enriched life and reach their full potential. I encourage all Albertans to support expectant mothers in having healthy pregnancies.”
The Government of Alberta has provided $16.5 million for 2016-2017 to support assessment and diagnosis, prevention and support programs for those living with FASD throughout the province.
Resources for Albertans
- 12 FASD service networks across Alberta help prevent, assess and diagnose FASD. They also provide programs and services for those affected by the disorder and their caregivers.
- Prevention Conversation: A Shared Responsibility – trains health and social services workers to have honest, respectful conversations with women of childbearing age about the impact of alcohol on pregnancy.
- The Parent-Child Assistance Program (PCAP) – provides 25 communities with support for women with alcohol or drug addictions.
- The Human Services Learning Series – helps Albertans with FASD, professionals and caregivers learn more about the disorder and how to support those who have it.
FASD Day awareness events are also held across the province.