Guidance on Health Assessments for Looked After Children in Scotland

This guidance has been produced to assist those involved in carrying out health assessments of our looked after children and young people. It sets out the minimum standardised elements of a health care pathway which we would expect Boards to implement in collaboration with local authorities and other organisations.

Section 5: Core Dataset to be Recorded on All Completed Assessments

In general there is value in recording the findings of looked after children health assessments in a consistent way across Scotland. A consistent approach to capturing the rich information required to

  • understand and plan to meet children's needs
  • allow clear communication of children's needs between professionals and agencies responsible for their care; and
  • facilitate transfer of information between areas when children move.

In addition, ensuring that a core subset of this detailed information is captured (according to agreed definitions and standards) will enable local monitoring and governance of looked after children's health assessments and the health needs of this group. Such a subset would also provide the essential first step towards developing a national data return that would allow comparative reporting and benchmarking between areas.

Data should be consistently captured and be compatible with existing systems across social work and health.

A required core subset of data to be captured electronically on all LAC health reviews along with supporting definitions and standards is provided in Annex A. This dataset focuses on the personal identifier information that should be captured on children undergoing a LAC health assessment and key health areas that are known to be particularly poor for looked after children. The personal identifier information is required to enable subsequent data linkage (e.g. linkage of LAC health assessment data to children's subsequent hospital admission records) which is an important way of monitoring outcomes for this group of children.


Email: Carolyn Younie

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