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HVs lack formal training in family relationships

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Health visitors want formal training in dealing with relationship problems between children and their parents, according to Glasgow researchers.

They argue that health visitors are well placed to screen for problems in the parent-child relationship but little is currently known about how they go about identifying such issues.

The researchers interviewed 24 health visitors, finding that they used a range of known risk factors and intuition. 'In many cases understanding difficulties in parent-child relationships involved piecing together a jigsaw over a considerable time span,' the authors said.

But they added: 'Participants reported a lack of formal training in the assessment of parent-child relationships and were keen to obtain more training.'

International Journal of Nursing Studies (2008) 45: 1137-1147

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