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All women deserve support to have healthy pregnancies and babies. Since the prenatal period is a critical time of development that can have long-term implications on a child’s life, Alberta’s government is providing financial support to expectant mothers early in their pregnancies to help ensure their babies thrive.
Starting May 1, 2022, the new prenatal supports for vulnerable pregnant women will provide eligible Income Support and Assured Income for the Severely Handicapped (AISH) clients an additional $100 per month at the start of their second trimester.
Vulnerable expectant mothers already qualify for a $256 one-time special diet benefit as part of the AISH and Income Support programs. This new prenatal benefit of additional $600 will help eligible women manage their challenges and improve health and wellbeing for both themselves and their unborn babies. At $856, we are now providing one of the highest prenatal benefits in the country to vulnerable mothers.
This is all part of Alberta’s government’s commitment to provide services and supports that meet the needs of our most vulnerable.
We know this added funding helps ease financial pressures on mothers preparing to welcome a new baby. It is another step towards reducing barriers and improving quality of life for women in Alberta.
It is estimated this funding will help 2,500 mothers on Income Support and AISH each year. Targeted investment in social supports like this can help reduce costs to the provincial health system to contribute to a healthier Alberta in years to come.
The baby with a great start becomes a teen finishing high school and an adult with job skills. When they contribute back to the society and Alberta’s Recovery Plan, it creates great social and economic return on investment.
Healthy babies lead to a bright future.
Jason Luan served as Minister of Community and Social Services from July 8, 2021 to October 24, 2022.