The Scottish Child Health Programme: Guidance on the 27-30 month child health review

Guidance on the core issues which should be addressed and recorded at the 27-30 month review, and standardised methods of assessment to ensure consistency of practice across Scotland.

Health promotion and evidence resources

65. A wide range of health promotion resources that can be shared with families is available to support delivery of the 27-30 month review. Use of these resources facilitates the delivery of consistent, clear, and evidence based messages to parents. Currently available resources from NHS Health Scotland and other organisations are listed in Appendix 3.

66. Clear communication is essential for safe and effective healthcare yet people remember and understand less than half of the information they are given during the course of a consultation. The role of the health practitioner is crucial in supporting effective communication including access to translations and alternative formats for parents and carers. The 'Teach-Back Technique' is a simple way to check that important information that has been conveyed to someone has been adequately understood. It involves asking patients to explain, or demonstrate, in their own words, what you have discussed with them.

67. The provision of written resources is useful to complement effective communication between the professional and the parent, however the following points need to be borne in mind: one in five adults in Scotland has difficulty with reading/numeracy and learning acquisition and it is therefore important to ensure that any information leaflets are not given out without full discussion of their contents. Additional materials may be available through local Health Promotion Libraries. NHS Health Scotland provides accessible and inclusive resources including materials for families whose vision is impaired, for parents with learning difficulties and sources of information in other formats.

68. Women and families from minority ethnic groups may require assistance with communication through the provision of interpreting and translated written resources. Currently interpreting services are arranged independently by each NHS Health Board or Local Authority. Health professionals should ensure that they are familiar with local arrangements (contact your local equality and diversity officer if you are unsure). This will help to ensure that appropriate need is identified and proper interpreting provision is in place when required. Effective communication is necessary for informed consent and effective care.

69. Health promotion and evidence resources change rapidly and it can be difficult to keep up to date. NHS Health Scotland maintains an Early Years Information Pathway that summarises available health promotion resources79.

70. The Maternal and Early Years website80 is another key resource that brings together a range of up to date resources for all practitioners working with pregnant women and young children.

71. Selected evidence summaries relating to the epidemiology and/or effective management of the issues covered in the 27-30 month review are listed in Appendix 4. The list is by no means exhaustive: particular focus has been paid to evidence summaries produced by NHS Health Scotland for the Modernising Nursing in the Community programme81 and high quality clinical guidelines such as those produced by the National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE)82 and the Scottish Intercollegiate Guidelines Network (SIGN)83.

72. The e-learning resource developed on behalf of the Department of Health to support delivery of the Healthy Child Programme in England also provides very useful and accessible summaries of current evidence on a range of topics relevant to the 27-30 month review, such as attachment, feeding difficulties, injury prevention, and numerous aspects of child development84. The e-learning resource is provided as 76 on-line tutorials grouped into 12 modules, with each tutorial taking 20-30 minutes to complete. Although the resource was developed to support the English programme, the vast majority of the information presented is equally applicable to the Scottish situation. All NHS staff (including those based in Scotland) can register to access the resource which is then freely available for them to work through at their own pace.

73. The Scottish Government is responsible for producing the national Personal Child Health Record ('Red Book')14 and the overarching parent information leaflet on the core Child Health Programme offered across Scotland ('The Child Health Programme: a Guide for Parents and Carers')85. Both of these resources will be updated to reflect the inclusion of a universal 27-30 month review in the core Child Health Programme.


Email: Mary Sloan

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