Changes ahead for school nurses, health visitors and breastfeeding services in Northamptonshire

County Hall, Northampton

County Hall, Northampton

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A consultation looking at key public health nursing services for children and young people has been launched.

Northamptonshire County Council is responsible for commissioning a public health nursing service covering the full age range from 0 to 19. This includes school nursing, health visiting, specialist breastfeeding and the family nursing partnership.

The consultation will find out what people like about these services, how accessible they are currently and what they want these services to provide.

A spokesman for the authority said: “To improve continuity across the services and age ranges, the council is planning to combine these services so that professionals will be able to continue to work with the same children for a longer period of time rather than passing them to another service as they get older.

“Feedback gathered through the consultation will help inform this new approach,” he said.

Cabinet member for public health and wellbeing Councillor Robin Brown said: “We are planning to change the way we commission these services and in doing so, improve the continuity for children and young people and their families.

“For example, currently when a health visitor is working with a child, once he or she starts school the responsibility for their support is passed on to a school nurse. This means a new professional has to learn about the child and their individual needs, potentially slowing down any progress.

“By commissioning these services together professionals will no longer be bound by the traditional age ranges of services, and both children and families can benefit by receiving support from the same professional for longer.”

The consultation is open from 18th April until 10th June and is available at https://www.surveymonkey.co.uk/r/0-19PublicHealthService