CLDF is concerned at statitsics announced at last week’s Community Practitioners and Health Visitors Association (CPHVA) Annual Conference which revealed that the number of health visitors fell by 8% over the past year.
The research, presented by Shadow Health and Social Care Secretary, Jonathan Ashworth, also revealed huge variation in the standard of care across regions and that more than one in five health visitors are working with case loads of over 500 children (the recommended maximum is 250).
“We know that UNITE and the Royal College of Nursing have expressed concern about cuts in this area and the pressure this puts on health visitors and we would add our voice to this,” said CLDF Chief Executive, Alison Taylor.
“Health visitors are in the front line when it comes to identifying the signs of liver disease in newborn babies. The symptoms – prolonged jaundice and pale (stools) poo – can easily be missed, so it is vital that health visitors have the appropriate time to spend with each child. We know that early diagnosis can make a significant difference to the outcome for children with liver disease and feel strongly that this is an area which needs investment and not cuts.”
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