Health Visiting Monthly News – December 2014

Welcome to December’s Health Visiting Monthly News.

Happy Christmas!!!

xmas bells

The HV Programme Team would like to wish everyone a very happy Christmas and a peaceful New Year.

2014 has been a memorable and challenging year for all of us involved in any way with the Health Visitor Programme. Unprecedented numbers of students have been in training and qualified successfully. During 2014 over 250 newly qualified health visitors have entered the workforce across the East of England with another 100 plus expected in early 2015 and a similar number in September 2015. The dedication of our partner universities, practice teachers, mentors, preceptors and many others in getting to this point can’t be underestimated. We were especially delighted that three provider organisations in the East of England had 100% completion for their Sept 2013 student cohort, this is a great achievement. Well done – SEPT Beds, Provide and ECCH.

Health visitors have also been engaged in a whole range of training in order to be extra skilled in their important work with families.

We hope you manage to have some fun,  rest and relaxation over the festive period.

Julia, Helen, Rowena, Sue, Jenny and Fiona.

Dates for your Diaires

Celebration Awards Event 6th March 2015

The HV Programme team are hosting an awards event on the evening of the 6th March 2015, to celebrate the successes of the programme over the last 4 years. We have Viv Bennett confirmed to attend and present the awards with other VIP guests invited.

Awards will be presented in several categories for each Workforce Partnership Area.

Dress code – ‘Dress to Impress’

The categories are:

 Practice Teacher, Mentor, Preceptor,  BCC Work Place Advisor and Team Award

Places will be allocated to shortlisted candidates in January 2015.

This is a ticket only event, to be in with a chance to attend please make sure you nominate worthwhile candidates by COB 19th December:

Health Visting Programme Awards – Nomination Form

New Date – ARU celebration event – now 15th January, 2015

This has been moved from 2nd December to 15th January and will be held at Hilton Stansted.  The invitations for applications and poster presentations are attached ARU Event 15.1.15 – Invite Booking Form  ARU Event 15.1.15 – Poster Presentation Flyer

iHV event – Sutton Coldfield 27th January, 2015

The Midlands iHV event will be taking place on 27th January. One of the master classes in the afternoon will be around the benefits of sharing practice and learning and utilising communities of practice as a vehicle to promote and support this.

If you have some examples of where practice in one area has supported the development of practice in another service through sharing and support. It would be wonderful to hear some examples of this.  please contact Jayne Hollingshead –

There will be a further date mid-March for an event in London which will be more accessible for colleagues in East of England.

Early Intervention Foundation is seeking champions

The Weblink below is another way to really spread the good news about HV and School Nursing.

Dates for your diaries

Title: Fact sheet on Health Visiting and commissioning of public health services for 0 to 5
year olds.

(Nov 2014)

To find out more information on this please click on the link below:,2YZZ2,HB5VZ1,APTQF,1

Review at 2-2½ Years – Integrating the Early Years Foundation Stage Progress Check and the Healthy Child Programme health and development review

Research report

Nov (2014)

To find out more information pelase click on the link below:

New NICE guidance on postnatal care

Dec (2014)


The iHV is now running a 2014 State of Health Visiting survey to find out how things are going in your practice, your needs, your challenges and how we can help you. Please please take 15 minutes out of your busy days to complete this. This will be in your interest!

Making the most of Health Visiting: The importance of Developing Compassionate Resilience in Health Visiting. 

Resilience is becoming a key area of focus across a range of Organisation both at an individual and a collective level.

For more information please click on the link below:

iHV_Makingthemost_Briefing doc_AW Internal

Good Practice Points for Health Visitors : Developing Compassionate Resilience

The Good Practice Points have been developed with health visitors across the country as part of the ‘Making the most of Health Visiting’ project. They represent shared knowledge and experience within the profession about what works.

For more information, please click on the link below:

GPP_ Compassionate Resilience_V3

Case Studies:


Anglian Community Enterprise Health Visiting Service working with the Traveller Community

In September 2011 it was announced that a twelve pitch Traveller Site was to be built in Colchester so a member of the Heath Visiting Team in the locality commenced engagement with the local Traveller Forum.

The site opened in March 2012 amongst a storm of protest from local residents. As a result of this opposition 24 hour guard dogs were allocated to the site, the entry gates were locked preventing ease of access for all parties thus creating an environment of isolation and intimidation.

The named Health Visitor commenced visits to the site introducing herself to each pitch offering the local HV service. Families appeared welcoming although understandably initially cautious. She was able to gain data re family dynamics and conduct basic health need assessments.

At subsequent visits, the families became more receptive to visits and responsive to health advice offered. In addition a monthly ‘drop in’ at the site has been established.

Delivering the Healthy Child Programme is a key component of the work with the Travellers. All levels of service delivery have been offered including Community, Universal, Universal Plus and Universal Partnership Plus. Other more diverse areas of work have  included liaison with local community services for example Primary Care and Dental clinics to discuss the practices permitting the families to register as the women themselves felt there was opposition. Also there was a need to identify a local outlet prepared to renew the family’s electricity cards as a shop keeper had refused to serve them.

One family had a baby with a major medical condition but did not wish anyone on site to know for fear of being ostracised. They accepted the HV liaising with their Consultant in Scotland and arranging open door access to the local Children’s Ward. They declined visits from Paediatric Nurses on site but agreed to attend GP and hospital appointments with HV support.

Other wide ranging requests have been actioned including reading letters and completing forms as many of the women have low levels of literacy skills. Also, a computer session at the local library was arranged for one resident to support her application for a loan caravan and mediation between the resident and local the County Council with regard to the tenancy agreement was undertaken.

Liaison with education and transport department to enable children to access school places has been progressed and support provided for their application for transport.

Immunisation compliance is still a major issue, the fear of ‘the needles’ and reservations regarding vaccine safety is a difficult issue to address due to their matriarchal society and customs. However, last year’s measles outbreak in Wales did enable the HV to gain consent for an impromptu clinic at the site via the Immunisation Outreach team.

In partnership with the local Children’s Centre a joint craft and play sessions has been conducted at the site for all the children and thus family support/outreach is beginning to be accepted on the site.

As a result of the work the HV has delivered she has expanded her knowledge, skills and expertise by researching customs, beliefs and practice within Travelling Communities and developed a ‘Special Interest’ in this area. This is acknowledged, encouraged and supported by the service and recognises the organisations responsibility to marginalised and ‘hard to reach’ groups.

Recently an illegal site appeared overnight and the HV approached families who were willing to discuss their issues. However before these needs were addressed they were evicted by the Council.

In the future to enable a more rapid response to meet the illegal sites families health needs consideration is being given for a “Rapid Response Team”. This will enable timely action to the arrival of” roadsiders” in order to offer health screening services and general health promotion / access to education advice for vulnerable families before they are evicted again.

Nicola Peterson – Health Visitor / Clinical Practice Tutor

For more information contact:

Dot Cordle – Health Visiting Implementation Projects Lead –

Reports on COP Event 

(Nov, 2014)

Review of the Essex Communities of Practice Event 19th November 2014

An interested and interactive group of Health Visiting professionals attended the recent Essex Communities of Practice (CoP) Event on the 19th November 2014.

This was the third event of its type held and in line with the terms of reference of the group, its focus was to:-

  • Share information & best practice
  • Develop expertise
  • Share evidence based practice
  • Implement the Health Visiting Implementation Plan.

Three presentations were delivered during the morning, which resulted in lively discussion and exploration of ideas within existing Health Visiting practice with those present.

Stephanie Farr, Assistant Director of Children’s Services in SEPT, presented an interesting review of Family Nurse Partnership delivery within Essex. She explored the wider history and development of the programme in relation to local service provision and how this compliments Health Visiting delivery.

Erin Brennan-Douglas Senior Public Health Manager Southend-On-Sea gave a very informative presentation on the big lottery funded award –Fulfilling Lives – A Better Start. Whilst this was primarily focused on the Southend-On-Sea area it resonated with the wider remit of Health Visiting and early intervention, including the introduction of the integrated two year review, implementation of the Ages & Stages development tool and working with partner agencies.

The final presentation was made by Jayne Hollinshead Regional Programme lead for the Institute of Health Visiting. This focused on themes around support within practice. Continuing professional development was core to the presentation and included information in relation to an on-line directory of quality approved training and resources. She also explored a framework for maintaining resilience for staff in practice, promoting leadership and development of standardised induction and preceptorship programmes to support newly qualified Health Visitors in the workplace. This was received enthusiastically by those present and this information will be shared with the wider workforce post the event.

Future CoP events are planned for 2015 onwards with the focus to consolidate and support Health Visiting Practice across Essex and embed the outcomes of the HV Implementation plan.

Christeen Bartlett- Health Visiting Professional Lead –West Essex –

Essex CoP Steering Group Member

Useful Information

Title: Why health visiting? Examining the potential public health benefits from health visiting practice within a universal service: A narrative review of the literature.

There is increasing international interest in universal, health promoting services for pregnancy and the first three years of life and the concept of proportionate universalism. Drawing on a narrative review of literature, this paper explores mechanisms by which such services might contribute to health improvement and reducing health inequalities.

The paper draws on the literature to explain why a universal health visiting service can be expected to reduce health inequalities, and how it operates. Recently published from the large literature review completed at King’s College in 2013, the publishers have made this paper ‘open access’ until mid-January.

For more information please click on the link below:

The Best Beginnings Baby Buddy App

was launched on 19/11/14 and can be accessed from the following hyperlink.

Please have a look at it and download it for info and use and recommend to all newly pregnant parents to be especially young mothers.

Latest Public Health Updates

Child and Maternal Health Updates – December 2014

We now have 383 Twitter followers – keep spreading the word!


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