Health visitors: a progress report

Document type
Corporate author(s)
Family and Parenting Institute
Family and Parenting Institute
Date of publication
1 April 2009
Health Services, Children and Young People, Families
Social welfare
Material type

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Health visitors are on the public agenda. The Government and all the political parties realise the vital role that they play in early intervention with families. A universal health visitor service is increasingly accepted by experts as the way to access the hard to reach. In the Laming Report, commissioned after the death of Baby P, the vital role of a universal health visitor in safeguarding has also been recognised. This 2009 report examines the progress made since previous 2007 report Health visitors- an endangered species. It shows the PCTs with the highest ratio of children under five to health visitors and those with the lowest and shows huge variations in the number of health visitors up and down the country - County Durham had one health visitor for every 165 children whereas some London health trusts had as few as one health visitor for 800 children. It concludes that it is important to concentrate not just on the numbers but on the quality of the health visitors.