Central Bedfordshire Council Looked After Children Annual Report
- Meeting of CORPORATE PARENTING PANEL, Monday, 15 January 2018 10.00 a.m. (Item 32.)
- View the background to item 32.
To consider a report describing the achievements, progress and challenges of the Looked After Children (LAC) healthservice in meeting the health needs of Bedford Borough Council (BBC) and Central Bedfordshire Council(CBC) children and young people in care, during the period from 1 April 2016 – 31 March 2017.
The Panel considered the report outlining the achievements, progress and challenges of the Looked After Children (LAC) health service in meeting the health needs of Bedford Borough Council (BBC) and Central Bedfordshire Council (CBC) children and young people in care, during the period from 1 April 2016 to 31 March 2017.
Points and comments included:
1. The Looked After Children Designated Nurse apologised for the delay in presenting the Annual Report which was due to a period of sickness. She explained that the information and data in the report related only to Central Bedfordshire, that Health data was received on a monthly basis from colleagues who attended Quality Meetings, that LAC services were commissioned by Public Health and that mental health services were commissioned from East London Foundation Trust (ELFT).
2. A lot of work had taken place around partnership working Health which included the Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) sitting on the Child Sexual Exploitation Group (CSEG) and involvement with the Local Safeguarding Children Board (LSCB) and the Voice of the Child sub-group.
3. The Looked After Children Designated Nurse had taken on the responsibilities of Child Sexual Exploitation (CSE) Lead as the post had only been commissioned by BCCG for one year.
4. There was now a single point of contact for CAMHS. Referrals were triaged via the appropriate service.
5. Norfolk County Council was leading the work on the East of England Protocol. The aim was for the Protocol to be implemented across Bedfordshire rather than a pilot. Feedback on the East of England Protocol.
6. As part of the Safeguarding Policy, each GP practice should have a designated lead for safeguarding children and young people. SystmOne, a patient data system used by GPs, included an icon for the identification of Looked After Children and was directly linked to the system used in Children’s Services. Every GP practice and school should also have a Designate LAC Social Worker.
7. Central Bedfordshire had also signed up to The Child Protection - Information Sharing project (CP-IS), a new database which alerts Social Care and Health Care teams when a child known to social services and is a Looked After Child or on a Child Protection Plan, attended an NHS unscheduled care setting, such as an emergency department or a minor injury unit.
8. The 7 children who did not receive an Initial Health Assessment (IHA) were either unaccompanied Asylum Seekers who went missing before their IHA or were LAC who refused to have an assessment.
9. The average score for the Strengths and Difficulties Questionnaire (SDQ) had reduced year on year (14.5% in 2015/16 to 13.2% in 2016/17). A further reduction had been seen in January 2018 (12.3%).
10.Feedback received from parent carers was that Health representatives did not always attend Annual Review meetings. The Looked After Children Designated Nurse explained that the Designated Clinical Officer has the responsibility for SEND and that Health representation at Annual Review meetings could be either the Designated Nurse for Looked After Children, the Speech and Language Therapist or Occupational Therapist. Work was taking place to ensure future attendance.
11.Following a recent review, improvements had been made to the Health Passport For Looked After Children. Discussions continued about ways to make the paper copy more robust such as a hard cover.
12.Members of the Panel asked very challenging questions around the lateness of the report as the data presented was a year out of date. The Director of Social Care, Health and Housing advised that the timeliness of the report would be discussed with the Director of Children’s Services and the content discussed with the Clinical Commissioning Group and relevant colleagues.
13.The Panel asked how issues that only pertained to CBC such as the shortfalls in health could be identified and understood?
the Central Bedfordshire Looked After Children Annual Report.
1. that an update on CAMHS be given at a future meeting.
2. that an update on the East of England Protocol be given at a future meeting.
3. that a copy of the Health Passport for Looked After Children be shared at a future meeting and an explanation on how the Passport works would be given.