QEII Family Centre farewells Canberra Mothercraft Society

Released 04/03/2019

After 56 years of dedicated service to Canberra families through the Queen Elizabeth II (QEII) Family Centre, the Canberra Mothercraft Society (CMS) has decided to transition out of its operations at QEII by 30 June 2019.

Minister for Health and Wellbeing Meegan Fitzharris said it’s the end of an era for CMS, but Canberra families will continue to get wonderful support at QEII post 30 June.

“Throughout its long history, CMS has had a lasting and positive impact on the health and wellbeing of Canberra children and their families, through the QEII Family Centre in particular,” Minister Fitzharris said.

“CMS was established in 1926 and has endured to become the Territory’s longest running health and social service provider.

“CMS has run QEII since its opening in 1963. Over this time, CMS’s services through the Centre have supported families experiencing complex health and behavioural issues in the postnatal and early childhood periods.

“Our shared priority is to ensure continuity of a quality service for families. For those families using the QEII service now and into the future, we are working together to achieve a seamless transition from one provider to another, thereby ensuring no disruption in the delivery of an available, accessible, acceptable and quality primary health care service at QEII.

“I wish to thank CMS, their President Fiona Smith du Toit and the QEII staff both past and present, for their commitment and contribution to the Canberra community over the decades.

“The Government is working with CMS to ensure a seamless transition to an alternative provider for staff and families, and we look forward to making further announcements on the future of QEII prior to the end of June,” Minister Fitzharris said.

CMS President Fiona Smith du Toit said, “CMS is proud of its achievements through the QEII Family Centre. Increasingly reliable evidence supports our long-held belief that investment in the early years of a child’s life makes a difference to the long-term primary health and social outcomes for children and their families.

“As a consequence, CMS is especially proud of its staff who over the past 56 years have helped make the difference with every family every day. The time has come though for this important work to be done by another organisation.

“In order to be effective into the future the CMS governance and diligence processes identified that QEII requires the resources of an organisation that enjoys a larger economy of scale to match the ever-increasing complexity of the contemporary health service delivery environment.

“It is with sadness that the CMS Board has come to the decision that it is time to hand over the QEII baton to a new provider. Our focus has always been on what is best for the families of the ACT and we are satisfied that this is the right decision for the sake of those that need the service at QEII.

“We are confident that we will be handing over a service of the highest quality with an excellent international, national and local reputation.

“CMS especially thanks the Minister for her understanding and respect for our decision. We will continue to work with the Government and the incoming provider during the transition and our shared intention is to see as many of our staff as possible continuing to do this important work at QEII.

“CMS will continue to serve families after it ceases operations at QEII through its Community Development Programs,” Ms Smith du Toit said.

The QEII Family Centre is a public hospital providing residential primary health care programs for families with young children (0-3 years) experiencing complex health and behavioural difficulties in the postnatal and early childhood periods.

- Statement ends -

Section: Meegan Fitzharris, MLA | Media Releases

Media Contacts

Name Phone Mobile Email

Claire Johnston (Minister)

(02) 6205 0022

0452 597 459


Mary Kirk (QEII)

(02) 6205 2338

0412 547 370


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