Ready to Act - A transformational plan for Children and young people, their parents, carers and families who require support from allied health professionals (AHPs)

The Plan meets the evolving needs of Children and Young People in providing an equitable and sustainable model that reflects the early years agenda and the integration of health and social care services


AHP Children and Young People’s Forum
A group of nominated or dedicated AHP children and young people’s leads from each NHS board who meet to take forward key pieces of work relating to AHPs working with children and young people.

Appropriate level of service
This refers to whether a child or young person can have his or her well-being needs met through universal approaches (those that are generally available to the population), or through more specific approaches (those available to children and young people at higher risk of impact on well-being), or specialist approaches through direct intervention on an active caseload.

Asset-based approaches
Concerned with facilitating people and communities to come together to achieve positive change using their own knowledge, skills and lived experience of the issues they encounter in their lives. They recognise that positive health and social outcomes will not be achieved by maintaining a “doing-to” culture and respect that meaningful social change will only occur when people and communities have the opportunities and facility to control and manage their own futures. [23]

Consistency of decision-making
Refers to variability in decision-making between practitioners and between services in Scotland. This means that some services are basing decisions regarding admission to caseloads, prioritisation and duration of interventions on problems and conditions, while others are using impact and well-being. Consistency in the context of the plan refers to reduced variation in the focus of decision-making rather than requiring rigidity or tick-box rule-based thinking

Early intervention
Providing support, education, reassurance, strategies or signposting based on expert understanding of the potential impact or harm of a condition on well-being to reduce the likely occurrence of that impact. This can be before a request for assistance as part of a targeted approach for children and young people who are more at risk of impact and who may not be active on the caseload.

National approach to requests for assistance
This would involve developing an approach to responding to requests for assistance by AHPs across Scotland so that consistent decision-making at the point of request for assistance was adopted across services. It would involve an approach to the initial conversation with whoever makes the request for assistance to determine the most appropriate course of action to meet the child or young person’s well-being needs by, for example, signposting, education, support, reassurance, strategies or step-up for assessment. The intention would be to ensure that all children and young people, parents, carers, families and those making requests for assistance have similar conversations with AHPs across Scotland.

National foundation AHP resource
Individual AHP professions, as appropriate, will decide on the key messages to be used in developing a resource for use across Scotland at universal level. This would then be made available to all children and young people, parents, carers, families, communities and those working with children and young people.

The definition of outcomes is the impact or end results of services on a person’s life. Outcome-focused services and support therefore aim to achieve the aspirations, goals and priorities identified by service users (and carers) – in contrast to services whose content and/or form of delivery are standardised or determined solely by those who deliver them. [24]

In the context of the plan, participation refers to involvement in decisions and discussions about children and young people’s well-being and their involvement with AHPs.

This refers to activities, strategies and approaches that will support children and young people, parents, carers, families and those working with children and young people to support well-being without direct intervention.

Requests for assistance under the Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 (Statutory Guidance): Named Person
A service provider or the managing authority for the child or young person’s plan can request that a service provider or relevant authority do a “certain thing”, provide information, advice or assistance to help promote support or safeguard a child or young person’s well-being.

Request for assistance/help
This replaces the previous term “referral” within the plan. It is the point when a child or young person, parent, carer, stakeholder or significant key person asks for expert opinion regarding how best to support a child or young person’s well-being.

SHANARRI well-being outcomes
Safe: protected from abuse, neglect or harm at home, at school and in the community.
Healthy: having the highest attainable standards of physical and mental health, access to suitable health care and support in learning to make healthy and safe choices.
Achieving: being supported and guided in their learning and in the development of their skills, confidence and self-esteem at home, at school, and in the community.
Nurtured: having a nurturing place to live, in a family setting with additional help if needed or, where this is not possible, in a suitable care setting.
Active: having opportunities to take part in activities such as play, recreation and sport which contribute to healthy growth and development, both at home and in the community.
Respected: having the opportunity, along with carers, to be heard and involved in decisions which affect them.
Responsible: having opportunities and encouragement to play active and responsible roles in their schools and communities and where necessary, having appropriate guidance and supervision and being involved in decisions that affect them.
Included: having help to overcome social, educational, physical and economic inequalities and being accepted as part of the community in which they live and learn. [25]

This term refers to a single point of access to a service. Many services, however, are using triage as a process for accepting or rejecting requests. Triage is in fact a complex point of decision-making by highly skilled practitioners. It requires very complex reasoning to understand why a request is being made, individual resilience, context and environment factors, and understanding of what is available locally to support well-being to direct people to the right support.

Values-based approaches
Involves working in partnership, respecting diversity, challenging inequality, promoting opportunity, promoting inclusion and participation, promoting emotional, psychological and physical well-being and promoting positive interactions.

girl and woman


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