The children’s programme of work spans many specialties and requires us to work together to ensure care is well planned and co-ordinated, with seamless transition points between services and as adolescents transition into adult services. Children and young people are defined as those aged 0-18 and 0-25 for those young people with special educational needs or disabilities.
Our focus for children and young people will be on:
- early intervention and prevention – we will work across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight to ensure local children have the best start in life including appropriate and timely immunisations and vaccinations;
- emotional wellbeing and mental health – we will ensure children and young people are able to access support for their emotional wellbeing and mental health, creating the right environment to support children to be resilient, safe and well cared for. We will do this by increasing capacity within the system through early intervention and prevention, helping care providers to increase support for children and young people by:
- rolling out mental health support teams within schools;
- increasing counselling services;
- further investment in crisis support, such as safe havens;
- improving psychiatric liaison support;
- ensuring children receive the support they need for eating disorders;
- improving access to support via NHS111 services.
- rolling out Connecting Care Children’s Hubs, through the regional Paediatric Network, working closely with primary care networks, NHS 111 and community health services to ensure children’s physical health is well managed, supporting children with long term health issues to manage their health and reduce the need for urgent care
- working in partnership with children’s services within our local authorities to bring about further improvements for children, young people and their families
- evolving our digital approach to enable services to be transformed and grow through the use of technology. Healthier Together is an online information platform that provides consistent advice and education for parents and professionals, this alongside the digital Red Book scheme will continue to be developed and enhanced. Other digital solutions will be tried and tested, such as the Think Ninja App, offering mental health support, and other tools which provide assessment and/or support.
The Healthier Together website has been produced with help and input from parents and clinicians to provide:
- Clinical pathway information for clinicians
- Information for parents on common symptoms and illnesses
- Clear advice on the different health and care support services available
- Consistent advice to parents
Our work is already having a significant impact with Hampshire and the Isle of Wight seeing the largest reduction in antibiotic prescribing for children in the country. This has been attributed to the consistent advice offered by the Healthier Together resources, which enables clinicians to make more informed decisions. Click here to read more about the website, the impact it has had on our patients, parents and health and care providers. The impacts of the website were presented at NHS Expo 2019 in order to share our best practice approach with colleagues around the country.