Managing your Child and Family Health Needs Together

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Whilst you are pregnant and usually up to 10 days after giving birth, your care is managed by midwifery services. You and your baby will then be discharged and transferred to the care of a health visitor.

Health visitors are nurses or midwives with a specialist public health qualification in community health/child development, who mainly work with children under 5 and their families. You may have had contact antenatally with your health visitor, if not; you will receive a new birth visit when your baby is between 10-14 days old.

The role of a health visitor includes:

  • Assessing the health needs of individuals, families and the wider community
  • Promoting good health and preventing illness
  • Antenatal support
  • A new birth visit at 10-14 days
  • Parenting advice
  • Delivering universal child and family health services via the Healthy Child Programme, which assesses you child's growth and developmental needs
  • Supporting vulnerable families and children with special needs
  • Providing advice and support e.g. weaning, sleep, accident prevention, behaviour management, breast/bottle feeding, immunisations, dental health, toilet training and local services and
  • Emotional well-being.

After your new birth visit you will be invited to attend a child health clinic, where you can discuss any queries you may have about yourself or your baby. A follow up visit at 6-8 weeks will be arranged to provide any additional support/advice you may need. Your baby's growth, health and development will also be assessed and developmental reviews are due at 8-12 months and 2-2.5 years.