TORONTO, Feb. 21, 2013 /CNW/ - Today, Parliamentary Secretary Dr. Colin
Carrie, Member of Parliament for Oshawa, announced on behalf of the
Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, Minister of Health, investments in two
projects to address Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD), a lifelong
disorder caused by prenatal alcohol exposure.
"Our Government is committed to addressing FASD and the lifelong impact
it can have on Canadians, their families, and their communities," said
Dr. Carrie. "That's why we are investing in projects to prevent more
cases of FASD and to help Canadians of all ages who live with it."
The first project, led by the Canada Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder
Research Network (CanFASD), will update diagnostic guidelines to include new FASD research and
recommendations on how to diagnose young children and adults. For the
first time ever, healthcare professionals in Canada and around the
globe will have access to guidelines so they can diagnose individuals
at any age.
"We need guidelines that reflect our improved understanding of how to
diagnose this complex disability," said Jocelynn Cook, Executive
Director of CanFASD. "These guidelines can then help lead to improved
health services and create a positive impact on the health and
well-being of children and adults with FASD, across their lifespan."
The second project, led by the Centre for Addiction and Mental Health
(CAMH), will study child development among elementary students to investigate
the prevalence of FASD among the Canadian population. Key findings will
highlight the impact of FASD in Canada and provide the evidence
required to improve policy, programs and resources to address FASD. The
World Health Organization will also use Canada's data in its study on
the prevalence of FASD around the world.
"It is essential to determine how many Canadians are living with FASD
before we can understand the severity and impact of this condition,"
said Dr. Svetlana Popova, CAMH senior scientist and the study's lead
researcher. "Once we have this information, we can plan policies and
programs that will prevent FASD and more effectively address those
already affected by it."
The Public Health Agency of Canada's FASD Initiative collaborates with
partners across Canada to coordinate activities to address FASD.
Through this Initiative, PHAC funds organizations to develop knowledge,
tools and resources to prevent future births affected by alcohol and to
improve the future health and well-being of individuals affected by
February 21, 2013
Government of Canada Invests To Promote Health, Well-being and Safety of
Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in Canada
Prenatal alcohol exposure is the leading known cause of preventable
developmental disability in Canada. It is estimated that 9 of every
1,000 births, or about 350,000 Canadians, are affected by Fetal Alcohol
Spectrum Disorder (FASD). The Government of Canada recognizes the
lifelong effects that FASD has on individuals, their families and
communities. Through the Public Health Agency of Canada's FASD
Initiative, the Government is committed to addressing FASD to improve
the health, well-being and safety of children, youth and adults across
The FASD Initiative collaborates with federal and provincial/territorial
governments, health and allied professionals, researchers, communities
and other stakeholders to coordinate activities to address FASD and to
contribute to research and policy efforts.
The FASD National Strategic Projects Fund (FASD-NSPF) supports
organizations to develop knowledge, tools and resources for use by
health professionals and other front line workers to prevent and
Today's funding announcement of close to $600,000 will support 2
The project Canadian Guidelines for the Diagnosis of Fetal Alcohol
Spectrum Disorder: Revision and Update will update the guidelines to
assist in diagnosing FASD among all age groups consistently. Led by
the Canada Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Research Network the
The project A Study on Child Development and Prenatal Factors with a Focus on Fetal
Alcohol Spectrum Disorder will estimate the prevalence of FASD in the Canadian population to
understand the impact of FASD. Led by the Centre for Addiction and
Mental Health the project will:
update the guidelines to incorporate new FASD research; and
add recommendations for diagnosing young children and adults.
gather data about the prevalence of FASD in Canada; and
share Canadian data with the World Health Organization for its study on
FASD around the world. Other participating countries will be from
Central and Eastern Europe (such as Belarus, Moldova, Poland and
Ukraine) as well as from Africa and Asia.
SOURCE: Public Health Agency of Canada
For further information:
Également disponible en français
Office of the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq
Federal Minister of Health
Public Health Agency of Canada