Pregnancy outcomes are influenced by preconception health, lifestyle and personal history. In fact, by the time many women know they are pregnant, it may be too late to prevent some birth defects, for example neural tube defects. Yes research shows that preconception health is not always addressed with people in age of becoming parents. The first step in building capacity among primary health care providers is to understand their current attitudes and practices regarding preconception health.
This report is part of a series of 3 Preconception health reports, and shares information from public health departments across Ontario. The survey results provide the opportunity to examine trends in public health preconception initiatives over the last 5 years, to learn from the experiences of individual public health departments, and to examine their needs and challenges related to preconception health services. The report shares survey highlights, detailed survey results, discusses the context of the information and makes recommendations relevant to local and provincial preconception initiatives. This report will help service providers to consider new preconception health strategies, and to strengthen existing services.