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6.25 Protocol for Joint Working between Social Care and the Family Nurse Partnership where the Mother or Expected Child may be a Child in Need or Looked After

Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Referrals to the FNP
  3. Planning Meeting when the Client has been Referred to Social Services
  4. Joint Visits
  5. Information Sharing
  6. Escalation of Concerns


1. Introduction

The Family Nurse Partnership is a licensed, evidenced based programme where highly trained nurses work with first time parents aged 19 and under from pregnancy until the child's second birthday. This intensive programme of weekly and fortnightly home visits works with the client's motivation to be good parents to effect positive development across a range of areas including sensitive parenting, education and employment and relationships. It is one of only two programmes in the world evidenced to prevent child abuse.

Family Nurses focus on the strengths of the client and their family and areas that would benefit from further enhancement. It is a partnership approach to working with clients that the Family Nurses aim to model in joint working with colleagues.

The principle for this protocol follows national and local safeguarding policies by promoting joint working between social workers, family nurses and the families they are working with based on good communication, transparency and a focus on improved outcomes for the children involved.


2. Referrals to the FNP

Young women are eligible if they are aged under 19 and are less than 28 weeks gestation with their first baby.

Mother must live in the Southwark area or have a Southwark GP at the point of referral.

Referrals can be made by professionals or directly by the client by completing the FNP referral form, attached.


3. Planning Meeting when the Client has been Referred to Social Services

When a young person has accepted a place on the family nurse partnership programme or been referred to social services a meeting should be held between the Family Nurse, the allocated social worker and their supervisor to share information about the family background, including any risk issues for staff and agree the following:

  • What the plan is for the mother and the unborn child;
  • Frequency of social work visits;
  • Frequency of FN visits;
  • Dates of joint visits;
  • Dates of key meetings - e.g. CP conferences, CIN meetings.


4. Joint Visits

At least 2 joint visits by the Family nurse and the social worker to the mother should be arranged in a year.

More visits may be required if the child is subject of a Child protection plan.


5. Information Sharing

The Family Nurse is a member of the professional network and so should:

  • Be invited to all professionals meetings;
  • Have access to Single Assessment documents and other reports as part of agreed information sharing;
  • Be notified if there is a significant change to the mother and baby's circumstances.


6. Escalation of Concerns

If the Family Nurse is concerned about the welfare of mother or baby they should immediately contact the social worker or immediate manager to inform them.

If the Family Nurse has continued concerns they should escalate these up through their supervisor to request a professionals meeting so that the issues can be discussed.

End