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Professor Ivy Ng
Group Chief Executive Officer, SingHealth           

Dr David Ng
Chief Executive Officer, SingHealth Polyclinics

Ms Joanna Portilla
Families for Life Council Member

My parliamentary colleagues

Ms Sun Xueling
Minister of State, Ministry for Social & Family Development & Ministry of Home Affairs

Ms Yeo Wan Ling
Advisor to Punggol Shore (Pasir Ris – Punggol Group Representation Constituency)

Ladies and gentlemen

1.        Good afternoon. It is my pleasure to be officiating the launch of Family Nexus @ Punggol today.

Better integrated support for Families

2.       Family Nexus is a pilot programme that brings health and social services together under one roof for families with young children. Parenting is very rewarding, but it is not without its challenges. And to be absolutely clear, my joy at being a father was entirely the result of other people. The hard work that my wife, my parents, my in-laws, the extended family, the circumstances in which my three boys were growing up in, were what allowed me as a father to enjoy the journey of parenthood. Not every family has that blessing and privilege. So life can be challenging for some parents if that support is absent. Therefore, we want to support parents well in their parenting journey. We want them to deal with these challenges and feel positive and productive about being a parent. It is good for them, their families and their children.

3.        Three years ago, we started having conversations with frontliners from the healthcare, social and education domains on opportunities for better integrated support for children and their families. We spoke to colleagues from Punggol Polyclinic and SingHealth as well as social service agencies in the region to better understand their needs. We also discussed co-locating cross-domain services to make it more convenient for families. Convenience is one thing and it is necessary for families. But is also the inter-professional work – the work that you do to make your services integrated, also results in better synergies and that community of practice that comes together.

4.       Today, I am delighted to join everyone here at Family Nexus, to witness this concept come to life. Families can access health and social services in the same location, close to their homes. This makes it more convenient for families with young children, as they do not need to visit multiple locations for different services.

5.       With this latest Nexus at Punggol Polyclinic, we now have four Family Nexus sites across Singapore. The other three sites span across the island and are at Our Tampines Hub, Choa Chu Kang Polyclinic and Keat Hong Community Centre, as well as Sembawang Polyclinic@Bukit Canberra.

6.        One important principle underscored by the initiatives under the CAMH Strategy and Action Plan is organising services around what children and their families need, at community touchpoints near them. Family Nexus exemplifies this key principle well. We need to bring these important services into the community and make them work for the families who are in need. To make Family Nexus happen, it takes not just the effort of healthcare agencies like the Polyclinics; but it requires close collaboration among healthcare, social and community partners to jointly plan and offer programmes and services that cater to families. This inter-agency, inter-organisational collaboration in order to deliver multi-disciplinary services within the community is something we have to continually build on and do more of in the future.

Family Nexus @ Punggol

7.        I am happy to see the success of this close collaboration among  SingHealth, Families for Life and community partners in this region at Family Nexus@Punggol. Here, families who come to the Integrated Maternal and Child Wellness Hub (IMCWH) programme can receive for their children, development screening and vaccination; and for mothers,  screening for maternal mental health, emotional health services and lactation support. The Family Nexus Coordinator also provides Families for Life resources like parenting programmes, access to support groups as well as articles, videos and tips on common parenting topics. Parents can learn skills to build strong parent-child bonds and nurture positive behaviours in their children.

8.       Family Nexus thus offers more holistic support for children and their parents, beyond healthcare. Through this effort, we hope that families with young children in Punggol and the Northeast region will have more convenient access to health and parenting services and will be able to thrive despite any challenges they may face to support their child’s health and development.

9.       Over the next few months, we will be sharing more initiatives that the inter-agency CAMH Taskforce has put in place to provide more holistic support to children and their families.


10.      In closing, I want to extend my appreciation to all of you  who has contributed to this pilot programme. With your help, we can continue building an integrated ecosystem across the social-health-education domains to support children and their families well.

11.      Thank you.



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