During the children’s twelve-day stay at Stewart House, children are provided with medical, dental and optometric assessment and treatment. For children requiring additional support counselling is available. This is balanced with health and education programs and out of school activities to boost their self-esteem and promote better physical and mental health. These services are provided free of charge to nearly two thousand children a year who attend this unique facility.
Health and Wellbeing
The health and wellbeing team at Stewart House includes our Student Wellbeing Manager (Clinical Psychologist), Health Liaison Officer, Student Placements Officer and our Wellbeing Liaison Officer who support the children’s wellbeing during their stay. We also have a registered nurse position funded through the Northern Sydney Local Heath District of NSW Department of Health. The nurse’s role is to perform hearing screening, asthma check, personal hygiene and dietary education for the visiting children whose parents/carers have given permission. If any concerns are identified, a report will be sent home to the parent/carer outlining any treatments that occurred as well as any recommendations for further care.
Children may also receive a referral to Go4Fun. Go4Fun is a free healthy lifestyle program for children aged 7-13 years with a focus on healthy eating and getting active.
The Northern Sydney Local Health District (NSLHD) Aboriginal Health Service (Bungee Bidgel Aboriginal Health Clinic) conducts health screenings with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander children at Stewart House. Children who are identified as needing further health screening or treatment are then referred to health care service providers in the child’s Local Health District. Bungee Bidgel Staff support healthy development and positive social and emotional wellbeing of all young people and children.
During their twelve-day stay children also have the opportunity to receive a free dental assessment and a dental health education program. The Dental Team at Stewart House is funded through Northern Sydney Local Heath District of NSW Department of Health.
If children require emergency care or pain relief they are treated at Mona Vale Dental Clinic after further conversation with parents and carers.
The School of Optometry and Vision Science at the University of NSW continue to provide vision assessment for all children visiting Stewart House. Final year students conduct the screenings. Staff optometrists of the University of NSW assist the students by providing guidance and supervision. The optometric assessment provides a thorough and comprehensive visual examination including measurement of the children’s acuity, determination of any refractive error, assessment of how well the eyes work and move together, a test of colour and vision and eye health examination. Where the assessment reveals that a child has a visual problem a letter is sent home to parents and carers suggesting an appropriate course of action. The children may be in need of a pair of glasses, it may be guidance for eye exercises to improve the way eyes work together, colour vision treatment or a program for general improvement in eye health.
Teachers Health Fund provide glasses or new lenses for the children as required.
Children receive a hearing check at Stewart House by Nurses employed by the NSW Department of Health. Identified children who need further testing are taken to Macquarie University for advanced audiology.