Is prosperity meant for all children?

The short answer is yes, prosperity is meant for all children in Iceland and their families.

The integration of services in the interest of a child's prosperity, however, is for those who need individualized assistance that requires the involvement of different service providers.

What does the Prosperity Act add to the services already available?

With the introduction of the Prosperity Act, emphasis is placed on strengthening basic services in the local environment of all children. Those children who now need individualized services have access to coordinators and case managers. They are meant to guide parents through the jungle that can be the system. The role of these parties is well defined and they should have scope and time to fulfill their role in the interests of the child's prosperity.

What resources can be used in integrated services?

The municipalities are currently working on resource lists that will be available to parents and, as the case may be, children, as well as coordinators. They outline what resources are available in the children’s local environment.

There are also resources provided by the state, such as resources within the healthcare system, which can be used when appropriate.

Resources made available by  organized interest groups and private parties  can also be highlighted, but there is no exhaustive list of the many resources available.

Should all cases where a child and their family need help be integrated?

The short answer is no, not all cases need to be integrated in order for a child to receive assistance and support.

In some cases, support at a basic level that all children have access to is sufficient. When children are in need of additional assistance and it is assessed that the integration of services is in the interest of the child's prosperity, a request to that effect can be submitted.

There is already a successful working team around my child. Do I need to request integrated services in addition to that?

No, not at all. If there is a functioning team around a child and the teamwork and cooperation is going well, there is no need to request integration of services. If there are any problems in the cooperation and difficulties with collaboration between different service providers, however, there may be a reason to look into whether the integration of services is in the interest of a child's prosperity.

What happens if my child needs individualized support but I do not want to receive integrated services?

The integration of services is an offer made to children and their families, but if parents so choose, they can attend the service themselves, but then it is not integrated.

The law does not replace services that should already be provided, but is intended as a supplement to pave the way for children and parents, to ensure the overall vision of key parties and for those who provide services to work together in the interests of the child.

What is the difference between an information sharing request and a service integration request?

Information sharing request:
A form that a parent and/or child fills out that allows a service provider or those who provide general services in the interest of a child's prosperity, to compile information about a child's circumstances and pass it on to a coordinator. The form only authorizes this specific sharing with this specific coordinator. The coordinator is not authorized to contact anyone other than the parents and/or child once the coordinator has received the information.

Integrated service request: A form that parents and/or child fill out requesting that services for the child be integrated. The request allows coordinators, case managers, service providers and those who provide services in the interests of a child's prosperity to process information about the child in order to ensure an organized and continuous service.

Do both requests need to be signed for service integration to begin?

No, it is not necessary in all cases.

An information sharing request is a form for those who share information at the parents' request to the coordinator and/or case manager. If parents prefer to directly contact the coordinator, they should not fill out a request for the sharing of information.

However, service integration cannot begin until a service integration request has been filled out on the appropriate form.

Where can I access  a coordinator for my child or my family?

Coordinator of services in the interest of a child's prosperity is a government and/or municipality employee who is located in different areas depending on the child's age level.

From birth to the start of preschool or primary school, the role of coordinator is fulfilled by a staff member at the health-care centre or health care establishment in the public health jurisdiction of the child. The same applies if integration of services is needed during pregnancy.

During a child’s preschool, primary school or secondary school years, a staff member of the school where the child studies fulfils the role of coordinator.

Children who fall somewhere between the above service systems, the role of coordinator, is fulfilled by a staff member of social services in the municipality where the child is domiciled.

Do both parents need to sign a request for information sharing and/or integration so that integration can begin?

There is no simple answer to this question. This must be viewed in the context of other laws where the child's case falls under, e.g. Children's Act, Child Protection Act and Patient Act. Some are aimed at both parents and others are aimed at the legal parents. The best interests of the child must always be the guiding principle.

Where can I access information and get assistance with the implementation of the Prosperity Act?

Further information about the implementation of the Prosperity Act can be found on the website of the National Agency for Children and Families, bofs.is.

For further consultation related to implementation and/or consultation regarding integration, please refer to the National Agency for Children and Families’ Prosperity Team, farsaeld@bofs.is.