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Mother-child pass

What is the mother-child pass for?

After a pregnancy has been confirmed, every pregnant woman resident in Austria receives a mother-child pass. The mother-child pass serves to ensure the provision of preventive health care for pregnant women and small children up to the age of five. The examinations which are laid down within the framework of the mother-child pass programme offer an opportunity for early detection and the timely treatment of illnesses, as well as for monitoring the development of the child.

All pregnant women and the parents of small children should therefore take advantage of the opportunity to enjoy the best possible preventive care for mother and child and carry out these examinations. Since its introduction in 1974, the mother-child pass programme has been continuously developed and adapted to the latest medical knowledge and experiences.

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Features of the mother-child pass programme

Gynaecological examinations for pregnant women:

  • One gynaecological examination by the end of week 16 of pregnancy and one laboratory test
  • One gynaecological examination between weeks 17-20 of pregnancy and an internal examination
  • One gynaecological examination between weeks 25-28 of pregnancy and a laboratory test
  • One gynaecological examination between weeks 30-34 of pregnancy
  • One gynaecological examination between weeks 30-34 of pregnancy

The examinations are carried out by general practitioners and the respective specialists. Carrying out these examinations during pregnancy is one of the conditions for the payment of child care benefit.

 

Ultrasound examinations during pregnancy:

  • One ultrasound examination between weeks 8-12 of pregnancy
  • One ultrasound examination between weeks 18 and 22 of pregnancy
  • One ultrasound examination between weeks 30 and 34 of pregnancy

The ultrasound examinations included in the mother-child pass programme are intended to monitor the development of the baby and to ascertain whether there is a multiple pregnancy. Additional information which goes beyond the clinical examination can also be obtained via ultrasound examinations. In this way, anomalies can be recognised early on, and taken into account and treated if necessary during the remainder of the pregnancy.

The ultrasound examinations are, however, not a condition for the receipt of child care benefit.

 

Advice from midwives during pregnancy:

During weeks 18-22 of pregnancy, it is possible to be advised by a midwife. The content of the advisory session covers issues like the course of pregnancy, birth itself, the post-partum period and breastfeeding. It also covers health-promoting and preventive activities during all of these periods and additional support which is available.

Midwives who offer advice as part of the mother-child pass scheme can be found at: http://www.hebammen.at.

Advice sessions with midwives do not form a condition of child care benefit.

 

HIV test:

The laboratory examination carried out by the end of the 16th week of pregnancy includes an HIV test. An existing HIV infection can be passed on to the unborn child during pregnancy. If a woman is unaware of being HIV positive, there is a high risk of it being transmitted to the baby during pregnancy or birth. This risk can be significantly reduced by medication and a suitable method of delivering the baby. This is why an early examination during pregnancy is important.

Carrying out the HIV test is one of the conditions for the receipt of child care benefit.

 

Oral glucose tolerance test: 

In around five to ten percent of pregnant women, diabetes can occur temporarily due to the metabolic stress of pregnancy. In the case of undiagnosed gestational diabetes, the unborn baby gains too much weight, grows too much and suffers from adaptation disorders after birth. A glucose tolerance test as part of the laboratory examination between weeks 25-28 of pregnancy can diagnose gestational diabetes. Meticulous care of the pregnant woman and a change of diet are then necessary. Insulin treatment can sometimes also be required.

Carrying out the glucose tolerance test is one of the conditions for the receipt of child care benefit.

 

Examinations for children:

  • One examination during the first week of the baby’s life (usually carried out in hospital)
  • One examination at the age of 4-7 weeks, including an orthopaedic examination
  • One examination at the age of 3-5 months
  • One examination at the age of 7-9 months including an HNO examination
  • One examination at the age of 10-14 months including an eye examination

Together with the examinations during pregnancy, the examinations of the baby until the age of 14 months form one of the conditions for child care benefit.

  • One examination at the age of 22-26 months including a examination by an ophthalmologist
  • One examination at the age of 34-38 months
  • One examination at the age of 46-50 months
  • One examination at the age of 58-62 months 1 ultrasound hip examination of the child in its first week and then in weeks 6-8.

The examinations are carried out by general practitioners and the respective specialists.

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