The Care Quality Commission (CQC) has published their review of the effectiveness of health services for looked after children and the effectiveness of safeguarding arrangements for all children using health services in Richmond upon Thames. This follows a CQC planned inspection of services in June, which involved interviews with children using services, their carers, and staff working in children’s health and care services.
Dr Graham Lewis, Chair of Richmond CCG said: “We welcome this review of the work we do to safeguard and meet the health needs of children living in Richmond upon Thames. This is an extremely important area of our work and I would like thank health and care staff working in the borough whose work has contributed to this positive review. We welcome the recommendations from the CQC to further improve the work we do, and will focus on making the changes described, so that every child receives the best possible care.”
The review gives feedback from inspectors on the work of Richmond CCG and the following local NHS organisations which provide care and support for children living in the borough:
- Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust
- Change, Grow, Live- Richmond Integrated Recovery Service
- Hounslow and Richmond Community Healthcare Trust
- Kingston Hospital NHS Foundation Trust
- South West London & St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust
The report concludes that the CCG is working with partners to improve outcomes for children in Richmond and that appropriate challenge is given to address issues when they are identified. The CQC also found good support and guidance being given to frontline staff by the borough’s safeguarding team of professionals.
The CQC has made a number of recommendations which are summarised below.
Richmond Clinical Commissioning Group is working on an action plan to address the issues raised and progress will be followed up by the CQC.
Some of the recommendations made include:
- Ensuring that GPs are fully engaged in health assessments for children looked after and sharing relevant information about children they care for.
- Improvements to the care records for children and young people within the emergency department at Kingston Hospital, including midwifery documentation.
- Central London Community Healthcare NHS Trust are asked to ensure that children and young people’s electronic care records reflect significant males associated with the family to ensure that children are protected. It is also recommended that the risk of female genital mutilation is appropriately explored and recorded for women attending the sexual health service.
- It is recommended that all home educated children and families should be made aware of the school nurse service so they can benefit from it.
- South West London & St George’s Mental Health NHS Trust are asked to ensure that people at risk of domestic abuse are identified through the use of routine enquiry and that answers given are recorded. They are also asked to ensure that adult mental health practitioners are skilled in assessing and considering safeguarding risks to the unborn or children, and that these risks are recorded.
- A copy of referrals made to the MASH should be available within children and young people’s electronic care record.
- Hounslow and Richmond Healthcare Trust are asked to ensure that arrangements for all children to have timely access to CAMHS services are strengthened, including priority access for children looked after and to continue to improve transition arrangements for those looked after young people moving to adult services.
- Change, Grow, Live- Richmond Integrated Recovery Service is asked to ensure that the child’s lived experience is evidenced within the adult care record through work with the service user and/or the child.
You can read the full CQC inspection report.