Giving children a healthy start in life is the overall aim of the new 0-5 years Healthy Child Programme (HCP) in North Yorkshire which is now underway.
Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust (HDFT) successfully retained the contract to deliver the HCP following a competitive bidding process. The contract, worth around £5m per year, is commissioned by North Yorkshire County Council and runs from 1 October 2016 until 31 March 2020.
The HCP will come under the ‘Growing Healthy’ brand, which HDFT has developed in partnership with children, young people and parents for its school nursing services in North Yorkshire as well as in Middlesbrough, County Durham and Darlington.
Health Visitors lead and deliver services to ensure a healthy start for each and every child in North Yorkshire, providing universal and targeted interventions during pregnancy through to school entry.
County Councillor Janet Sanderson, North Yorkshire’s Executive Member for Children’s Services, said:
The new service will include promoting positive physical and mental health, supporting new parents, and assessing the health and development of children and young people.
Health visitors are able to provide ongoing support, working with a range of local services in partnership with the family to deal with more complex issues over a period of time. The team works in partnership with maternity services, local authority provided or commissioned early years services, voluntary, private and independent services, primary and secondary care, schools, 5-19 Healthy Child Service, GPs and children’s social care services.
County Councillor David Chance, North Yorkshire’s Executive Member for Public Health and Stronger Communities, said: “HDFT is using a ‘One Team’ approach and service delivery model for the HCP integrated into the local children’s services. This will help to deliver efficient and effective services at a community, local and individual level, providing a clear focus on prevention and early intervention to improve outcomes and tackle health inequalities.”
The ‘One Team’ of health visitors are supported by early years practitioners and administrators and work together with multi-agency partners and stakeholders.
Lorraine Fox, Head of Children’s Public Health Nursing at Harrogate and District NHS Foundation Trust, said:
This is an exciting opportunity for us to develop our partnership with North Yorkshire County Council and together continue to deliver a high quality service to the children and young families in North Yorkshire. We will be working with children, young people and their families to reduce risk, build resilience and keep them safe.
The aim of the service is to support the transition to parenthood and empower parents to make informed decisions that are best for their family. We will ensure families know how to access the Health Visiting service for further help and support and continue to build close links with key partners such as GPs, Children’s Centres and the voluntary sector.