"Concern over change in health visitor services"

About: Children & younger people's services / Health visiting, Sherwood

(as a volunteer/advocate),

I wish to comment on the recent decision in Nottinghamshire to make all current drop in clinics for babies and young children, appointment only.

I am a community organiser in Bestwood Village, Nottingham and we fought hard over a period of 3 years for the present once a month drop in clinic. It is used primarily by young, often isolated mothers mainly for baby weighing - but during this process conversation often leads to relating other health issues affecting the child and a seeking of reassurance from the mother.

This informal though extremely useful service is - at very short notice - being terminated and I very much doubt whether those same mothers will use the appointment system as planned. They will just disappear into the community.

It would have been really helpful to have had more notice of this change in order to manage the transition more effectively and wonder whether we could continue until say, March under the present system? Failing that, could we have the 'phone numbers urgently where appointments can be made? Currently these are not available and in order to communicate this change in arrangements to the village community we need to be able to advise the contact numbers.

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Responses

Response from Karon Foulkes, General Manager, Children and Young People, Health Partnerships We have made a change

picture of Karon Foulkes

Dear Maximus9

Thank you for raising your concerns about the services in Bestwood Village. You are right that the Health Visiting clinic for parents is changing however following some discussions today I am pleased to let you know that the clinic will continue with an appointment based health visitor clinic at the same venue and frequency as before, but will have the additional opportunity for parents and children to attend a new fun session that will run alongside the clinic delivered by local parents and supported by the Childrens Centre. This is in anticipation that it will encorage more vulnerable parents to continue to engage with services and feel confident to continue to access the Health Visiting service though the new appointment based system.

I am sorry the communication about the changes has been poor, we are going through a period of change at the moment so your feedback is welcome. I will be asking the managers concerned to ensure that the telephone numbers to make an appointment are shared in appropriate venues as soon as possible locally. If you would like information to go to you directly to share please contact me at karon.foulkes@nottshc.nhs.uk or the Service Manager for the area Katie Brown at Katie.brown@nottshc.nhs.uk.

Kind regards

Karon

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