Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program: 25 years of success

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Organization: Public Health Agency of Canada

Date published: 2021-06-02

Celebrating 25 years of CPNP’s success in supporting the health and well-being of pregnant people, new parents and their babies in Canada

The Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program (CPNP) is a national community-based program launched in 1995, funded by the Public Health Agency of Canada. The program:

  • promotes the health of pregnant people, new parents and their babies, who face challenges that put their health at risk
  • is delivered by approximately 240 community-based groups, agencies and coalitions across the country
  • reaches more than 45,000 participants across Canada each year

Access to community-based programs and resources

  • Prenatal and postnatal health promotion programs
  • Referrals to community services
  • Breastfeeding education and support
  • Nutrition counselling and prenatal vitamins

Knowledge and skills gained

As a result of attending CPNP, program participants report a better understanding of:

  • Baby's growth and development (94%)
  • The signs of postpartum depression (87%)
  • Attachment and ways of bonding with their baby (91%)
  • Safe sleep for their baby (91%)
  • The effects of drinking alcohol (83%) and smoking (81%) during pregnancy

Positive health practices adopted

As a result of attending CPNP, program participants report:

  • Initiating breastfeeding (93%)
  • Taking multi or prenatal vitamins more regularly (72%)
  • Making healthier food choices (82%)
  • Feeling better able to cope with stress (81%)
  • Limiting exposure to second hand smoke (72%)

Improved health and well-being

  • Improved mental health (83%)
  • Improved health and well-being (94%)
  • Increased confidence in their ability to cope with labour and birth (85%)
  • Increased confidence in parenting skills (91%)
  • CPNP had a positive influence on their pregnancy (95%)

Access to a positive, supportive environment

Participants report:

  • Feeling welcomed and accepted (96%)
  • Having more people to talk to when needing support (93%)
  • Feeling that staff respond to their concerns (96%)
  • Feeling their personal and cultural beliefs were respected by the program (95%)


Public Health Agency of Canada. (2018). 2018 Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program (CPNP) Participant Survey data.

Public Health Agency of Canada. (2020). Canada Prenatal Nutrition Program (CPNP) [Internet]. Available from:


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