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The impact on service collaboration of co-location of early childhood services in Tasmanian child and family Centres: An ethnographic study


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Jose, K ORCID: 0000-0002-9346-6429, Taylor, CL, Jones, R ORCID: 0000-0002-9601-8605, Banks, S, Stafford, J, Zubrick, SR, Stubbs, M, Preen, DB, Venn, A ORCID: 0000-0001-7090-1398 and Hansen, E ORCID: 0000-0003-4733-3411 2021 , 'The impact on service collaboration of co-location of early childhood services in Tasmanian child and family Centres: An ethnographic study' , International Journal of Integrated Care, vol. 21, no. 2 , pp. 1-13 , doi: 10.5334/ijic.5581.

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Introduction: There is a global trend towards place-based initiatives (PBIs) to breakthe cycle of disadvantage and promote positive child development. Co-location is acommon element of these initiatives and is intended to deliver more coordinatedservices for families of young children. This paper examines how co-locating earlychildhood services (ECS) from health and education in Child and Family Centres (CFCs)has impacted collaboration between services.Methods: This ethnographic study included 130 participant observation sessions inECS between April 2017 and December 2018 and semi-structured interviews with 45early childhood service providers and 39 parents/carers with pre-school aged children.Results: Service providers based in CFCs reported that co-location of serviceswas facilitating local cooperation and collaboration between services. However,insufficient information sharing between services, prioritising client contact overcollaborative practice and limited shared professional development remained barriersto collaborative practice. For parents, co-location improved access to services, but theyexperienced services independently of each other.Discussion and Conclusion: Co-location of ECS in CFCs contributed to greatercooperation and collaboration between services. However, for the potential of CFCsto be fully realised there remains a need for governance that better integrates servicepolicies, systems and processes that explicitly support collaborative practice.

Item Type: Article
Authors/Creators:Jose, K and Taylor, CL and Jones, R and Banks, S and Stafford, J and Zubrick, SR and Stubbs, M and Preen, DB and Venn, A and Hansen, E
Keywords: early childhood services, place based, ethnography, co-location, collaboration, Australia
Journal or Publication Title: International Journal of Integrated Care
Publisher: Ubiquity Press Ltd.
ISSN: 1568-4156
DOI / ID Number: 10.5334/ijic.5581
Copyright Information:

© 2021 The Author(s). This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution 4.0 International License (CC-BY 4.0), which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited. See

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