World Children’s Day, celebrated on 20 November each year, serves as an important reminder of our collective commitment to safeguarding the rights of children to food, healthcare, education and protection from exploitation.
Established in 1954 as Universal Children’s Day 20 November marks the day on which the UN Assembly adopted the Declaration of the Rights of the Child, in 1959, and the Convention on the Rights of the Child, in 1989 both aimed promoting international collaboration in improving children’s welfare.
According to Lizeth Kruger, Clinic Executive at Dis-Chem Baby City, among these fundamental rights, healthcare stands as a cornerstone to children’s wellbeing, providing early detection of diseases and developmental issues that enable timely and effective interventions.
“Primary healthcare is the foundation of sound health and we owe it to our children to promote their wellbeing, prevent disease and provide treatment. Our clinics are proud to be at the forefront of ensuring that every child’s right to health is upheld from pregnancy to birth right through primary school to adulthood,” says Kruger.
In focusing on the right to health this World Children’s Day, she highlights the key physical, social, emotional, and cognitive development health factors to prioritise.
- Pregnancy check-ups
Ensuring regular antenatal check-ups is not just a commitment to a mother’s well-being; it is the basis for the healthy development of the child from the very start. These check-ups provide crucial insights and interventions to support both the mother and child throughout pregnancy.
Immunisation is essential for children’s health as it helps prevent the spread of diseases and reduces the risk of outbreaks. It plays a vital role in preventing severe illnesses and complications that can result from these diseases. Parents play a crucial role in ensuring their children are immunised as schools do not admit a child to start primary school without an up-to-date immunisation record.
- Developmental assessments
Clinics conduct crucial developmental assessments, evaluating a child’s physical, cognitive, and social-emotional development. These assessments help identify developmental delays, learning disabilities, and other issues that may hinder a child’s progress. Early intervention can address these issues, ensuring children reach their developmental milestones.
- Early detection and prevention of health issues
Regular checkups and screenings are essential for detecting early-stage health problems, including hearing and vision issues, developmental delays, and chronic diseases. Early intervention can prevent these issues from worsening and ensure children receive the necessary care to reach their developmental milestones.
- Health education and counseling
Our primary healthcare provides health education and counseling to parents and caregivers, covering topics such as nutrition, safety, and parenting skills. This education helps parents create a healthy environment for their child’s growth and development.
“This World Children’s Day, we all need to take responsibility and pledge to all children in our sphere of influence to do everything in our power to protect them and help them thrive in every aspect of their lives. It is a shared responsibility that extends to parents, communities, corporates, governments and the wider society,” Kruger concludes.