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Local health visitor visits 'to be personalised'

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Local health visiting teams will soon offer a more personalised service after the expansion of a programme providing support in homes and communities.

A total of 23 areas are planning to make their health visiting services more dynamic to meet the needs of their communities.

It is the second phase of a national roll out designed to improve the way health visitors work.

During the first phase 26 sites, which have now been running for over a year, incorporated a number of projects.

These included a ‘breast start’ app developed by the Wirral Community Trust to advise on breast feeding technique and highlight public places that are ‘breastfeeding friendly’.

Meanwhile, NHS Blackpool has launched the ‘Hello Baby’ course which gives mothers with young babies post natal depression help to understand their baby’s needs and help with bonding.

It is hoped that, with this being the 150th year of health visiting, it will mark progress towards the whole country receiving a health service that is both dynamic, personalised and universal.

Clare Whitehead , Infant Feeding Lead at The Wirral Community Trust said: “Since we became an Early Implementer Site for Health Visiting, we have been given unique opportunities to explore innovative ways of communicating with local families.

“Our breastfeeding App, Breast Start, was developed following parent consultation, with the aim of giving mums professional, evidence-based information whenever needed. It also lists and directs them to local cafes and restaurants, where mums can feel comfortable breastfeeding.

“Our team approached the proprietors to join efforts to promote breastfeeding and display a “Welcome to Breastfeed” sticker”.

“Developing the Breast Start App has been an incredibly exciting project to be part of and has enabled us to create this innovative tool that Health Visitors can use when working directly with clients.”

The second wave of Early Implementer Sites are:

  • Sussex Community Trust (West Sussex)
  • Kent Community Health Trust
  • Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Foundation Trust
  • Integrated Children’s Services NHS Devon
  • Somerset Partnership Foundation Trust
  • Sandwell and West Birmingham Hospitals Trust
  • Lincolnshire Community Health Services
  • Leicestershire Partnership Trust
  • Humber Foundation Trust
  • NHS Barnsley
  • Oxford Health NHS Foundation Trust
  • Oldham Community Health Services
  • Pennine Care NHS Foundation Trust
  • Liverpool Community Health Trust
  • Bridgewater Community Healthcare Trust - Ashton Leigh and Wigan Community Healthcare
  • Bridgewater Community Healthcare Trust - NHS Trafford
  • Bridgewater Community Healthcare Trust - NHS Warrington
  • St Georges Health Care Trust (Wandsworth)
  • Sutton and Merton Community Services Greenwich Community Health Service
  • Essex North and South Cluster (which comprises: South East & West Essex; Anglia Community Enterprise and Community Interest Company, Central Essex Community Services and North East London Mental Health Foundation Trust)


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