Children’s bowel and bladder charity Eric has launched a new website featuring an innovative tool for health professionals, which was designed in collaboration with nurses.
According to the charity, its Children’s Continence Pathway has the potential to “drastically improve” local continence service provision.
“This is the first time a generic children’s continence pathway has been created”
The pathway follows a series of flowcharts guiding the reader through best practice in continence care, informing about assessment and intervention and signposting to valuable resources.
Resources include a comprehensive continence assessment form, a “poo diary”, drinking and toileting reward charts, an intake/output chart, guidance on how to prepare macrogol laxatives, and information about constipation in breastfed babies.
The pathway’s resources, which were developed along with other innovations during the three-year ERIC Nurse Project, can now be downloaded from the charity’s new website for the first time.
Charity chief executive Juliette Randall said: “This is the first time a generic children’s continence pathway has been created and made readily accessible online.
“I hope it will be used widely to support the improvement of continence services across the UK,” she said.
“The Pathway is a one-stop shop for professionals”
She noted that, although presented as a generic tool the charity could also support health professionals to “make it bespoke to their service and welcome anyone to get in touch”.
Eric nurse Brenda Cheer highlighted that there was “huge variation” in the provision of continence services across the UK.
“Care is often fragmented with different people providing services for bladders and bowels, for day and night time problems, for children with additional needs and those without,” she said.
She described the pathway as a “one-stop shop” for health professionals that could help improve paediatric continence services.
She added: “Parents and carers can also use it to navigate the care system and work out what help is or should be available.”
The ERIC Nurse Project was a three-year pilot study run by the charity in collaboration with the Community Children’s Health Partnership in Bristol and South Gloucestershire.
The project, which ended last May and won a Nursing Times Award, aimed to increase early intervention into childhood continence problems and promote excellence in continence care.
It involved the development of leaflets to increase parental awareness of children’s continence and the support available, the delivery of training for health professionals, and the development of the pathway to improve the child’s journey through continence care.