Health Visiting Monthly News – 23rd July 2014

Hello All,


Welcome to July’s Health Visiting Monthly News.

Thank you to all that attended the ‘New Opportunites in Public Health for Children’s Services’ on 24th June. Thank you also for your postive feedback and ideas of what to include in the October Event for practitioners.

We will shortly be advertising this event so please do pass this onto your appropriate colleagues to get booked on!



‘New Opportunities in Public Health for Children’s Services’

On the 24th June 100 senior managers from Health and Local Authority providers in the East of England came together to explore the opportunities to ensure the delivery of the Healthy Child Programme continues once the change in Health Visiting commissioning comes into effect from October 2015.

We had key note addresses by experts from both Health and Local Authority commissioning teams who laid out their vision for the future of services for 0-5 years, which was outcomes focussed rather than service focussed.

Discussions around what early intervention means to your organisation led to debate about the use of the same words to mean different things to different services and a real need to consolidate and define the common used terminology to ensure we all mean the same thing.

The afternoon workshops highlighted areas of excellent partnership working and ensured that evidenced based practice was not only shared within health but with stakeholders delivering services across the children’s workforce. We also had information from Julia Yelloly Local Specialist for the East of England, ChildChild and Maternal Health Intelligence Network, KIT East available for delegates to demonstrate the wealth of child health data available to support local decision making.

The evaluations of the day were very excellent and we will utilise the ideas generated to support the delivery of a further conference for practitioners to be held in October.


Suffolk County Council – Healthy Child Programme

Suffolk County Council celebrated the official launch of their Healthy Child Programme/ Family Nurse Partnership, on Fri  4 July at Trinity Park, Ipswich.

Sue Cook – Director of CYP, SCC opened the event and gave a warm welcome to the  key note speakers;

Dr Dan Poulter, MP, Under Secretary of State DOH, and Prof Viv Bennett, Director of Nursing DOH and PHE, highlighted the Health and Wellbeing board priorities and informed of the Personalised care and Population Health life course approach to PH which was posted on the PHE Website that day.

Julia Whiting – HV Programme Lead for East of England congratulated SCC on their achievements as part of the programme as did Chris Welton  on behalf of the FNP National Unit.

Local leads and managers then  presented a range of local projects demonstrating the Integrated approach in use across CYP services.

The event was well attended and a huge success.

Please click on the link below to read Dan Poulter’s newspaper review from the event:

Dan Poulter Article

Case Studies:


Cambridgeshire Community Services – BCC Project ‘Toddler Trail’

The BCC project was initiated from identified needs within the local community; to reduce childhood obesity and rates of postnatal depression (Rudolf, 2009)

The client group became apparent through searching and surveying for a community need. Families with toddlers who transfer into the area but they do not have a supportive network and also child minders within the local community. It was felt that both client groups would benefit from a ‘toddler trail’. In addition the concept met Cambridgeshire’s Health and Wellbeing Strategy; encouraging healthy lifestyles and behaviours, ensuring a positive start to life for children and creating a safe environment building a strong community.

The location was decided upon as Milton Country Park as it lent itself well to the project. It had an identified walk within the woods around the Lake and it has toilets, baby changing facilities and a coffee shop.

The trail ended at the play park allowing the children to have a longer play or picnic. The hope was that some parents/carers may choose to stay and make friendships and increase the chance that they may met again independently.

We detailed a plan with agreed timeframes including advertising, how to launch and Health Visitor cover. We intended to support the families for the first month or two and then the parents would take the lead.

We met with the ranger to discuss the logistics of the long term plan for the park and agreed that wooden posts would have ‘wellington boot’ identification labels on to mark the trail trail and would be permanent factor of the country park. We initially worked closely with the Ranger however, due to her other commitments she became less involved.

The launch was a huge success and 40 children attended, including the local press. The trail involved a walk around the country park following laminated pictures that the children marked off along their way. The trail was linked to the story that was then told at “fairy wood”. There is a wooded area, with fallen logs and the children formed a circle whilst having a snack and a story. The launch story was the ‘Gruffalo’ aided by a puppet which helped the children’s interaction.


Each week there is a different themed trail and story. So far there are between 20 and 40 children attend, except for Easter which saw an amazing crowd of over 100 children. On this occasion each child received an Easter egg kindly donated by local food stores. The success of the toddler trail has also brought challenges such as sourcing an interested parent to take the lead as many were reluctant due to the size of the group.

The trail has proved exciting for the children and parents have reported that they have been looking for activities such as this for their children; referring to it as a great idea and also making suggestions for other parent led projects.

The interim plan for the project is that the families exchanged email addresses and organised a self-rota of attending early to set up the trail. The laminated trails and trail finders were left in the coffee shop and all the necessary equipment left for purpose. The ranger continues to discuss the long term plan of the post and wooden disks and it is hoped that this will be up and running in the not too distant future. Due to the size of the initial group it has now split into smaller more manageable groups who all access the park and equipment.

Undertaking this work based project has allowed the Health Visiting team to deliver key developments to make a difference to communities.


Rudolf, M. (2009).Tackling obsesity through the healthy child programme. A framework for action. NHS- Leeds Community Healthcare.

Authors: Debbie Cowling & Hannah Cherry

 Fleur Seekins Professional Lead –
Mobile: 07507895379
Julie Bunn Health Visiting Service Manager


NELFT – Integrated working party with Health and Children Centres

In order to improve the working relationships between Health and Children Centres and be able to deliver a cohesive service to the clients in the Basildon and Brentwood areas an integrated working party has been established.

The working party aims to develop strong working relationships and provide integrated services that meet the needs of the communities that we serve.

The clinical leads from each health visiting team attend as do the team leaders from each Children’s centre. The meeting is chaired by the Children’s Services Manager for Barnardos and take place every 8 weeks.

Already positive changes have happened with Children’s Centre staff now attending child health clinics in many of our bases in order to market their service alongside Health. Additionally, it has given a formal arena to meet regularly to discuss positive working practices as well as highlighting areas of concern.

We are currently in the early stages of developing a joint Communities of Practice event. This will give us the opportunity to deliver evidence based training, develop stronger working relationships and to learn more about each other’s roles.

Lucy Putney
Health visitor implementation officer


Hertfordshire ‘Bedfordshire and Luton Communities of Practice’ Event.

The Novotel Stevenage was the venue for Hertfordshire, Bedfordshire & Luton ‘Communities of Practice’ event held in March this year. Over seventy delegates attended a wonderfully lively event designed, organised, and facilitated by Karen Afford (Hertfordshire), Jacky Syme (Bedfordshire) Hilary Hemmings.

The aim of the event was to learn from colleagues about practice developments in health visiting across regions. To share and learn from each other. After Karen Afford (Educational Lead for Hertfordshire) formally opened the event, delegates were asked to move to the presentation of their choice. The purpose of the table set up came from feedback from a previous event, as it allowed interaction with the speaker and encourage participation.

The speakers were approached specifically by their organisation; they included The VIG (project on videoing parents who need support with parenting). Introducing the New Baby Friendly standards. Integrated 2 year reviews. Bump to babies programme, we were lucky to commission a psychologist from Crispin Day team to discuss Restorative Supervision.

Feedback from the event was highly positive – comments such as ‘an excellent event for networking’, ‘a really informative afternoon’, ‘I really enjoyed finding out about services in different areas’ and ‘a great afternoon, ‘looking forward to using the VIG’ – ‘the new baby friendly standards are easier to follow’ lots of info ’ it was good to see organisations aspirations’ were typical.

Our next event is in July and we hope many of you will attend. The theme will be Baby clinics in the new world.

Karen Afford (Hertfordshire), Jacky Syme (Bedfordshire) and Hilary Hemming (Luton)

Essex Communities of Practice Event

The third Essex Communities of Practice event took place on 9th July which saw the five providers in Essex come together to share information and best practice, build knowledge, develop expertise and share evidence based practice.

There were over sixty attendees to the event which included representatives from the Essex and Thurrock Commissioners, Heads of service and Health Visitors. The event followed the structure of the Health Visiting service offer with a short presentation from each provider with time for questions, networking and evaluations.  

The topics presented were:

Community – Sustaining a Building Community Capacity project; Provide 

Universal – Delivering ‘Baby Beginnings’ postnatal group; Anglian Community Enterprise

Universal Plus – Speech and language development “the teddy bear toolkit”; South Essex Partnership University Foundation Trust South East

Universal Partnership Plus – The voice of the Child; South Essex Partnership University Foundation Trust West 

With an additional presentation from North East London Foundation Trust – The Perinatal Mental Health Toolkit and champion training

Feedback given on the day was hugely positive with very lively discussions and lots of note taking!!

The Essex COP steering group would like to share a quote from a Health Visitor who attended the event;

This is the “First time I have attended one of these events and I found it very helpful, thought provoking and inspiring”, Jo O’Toole, Health Visitor at NELFT. 

The Essex Communities of Practice Steering group

Lucy Putney – NELFT
Jill Hopkins – SEPT SE
Christeen Bartlet – SEPT West
Carys Mortimore – Provide
Dot Cordle – ACE



MacQueen Award for Conference Attendance

The CPHVA Education & Development Trust is pleased to announce a new MacQueen award to enable attendance at the Unite/CPHVA Annual Professional Conference 2014 (to be held on 5th & 6th November at The National Exhibition Centre, Birmingham).

The award will provide a full conference ticket and £50 towards travel/ accommodation. Up to six awards are available.

Applicants must be CPHVA members who have qualified within the last two years OR have never previously attended a CPHVA Conference

Further details about the award and the application process are available from Linda Llewellyn, member of the Professional Advisory Committee:

Closing date for receipt of completed applications: 8th August 2014


Recent Publications

Latest Public Health Updates

Child and Maternal Health Knowledge
Updates – July 2014


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