Children and young people in care are a highly vulnerable group with increased physical, mental and social health needs and with limited access to health care services.
General practice is best placed to conduct a comprehensive health and development assessment and develop a health management plan. The National Clinical Assessment Framework for Children and Young People in Out-of-Home Care recommends that children in care receive:
To support general practice to do this, a clinical health pathway to support assessment, management and referrals as well as health assessment templates are available to download into your software via the Children and Young People in care page on GCPHN website.
What to expect?
Some services may prioritise children in care if their child protection status is included in the referral.
It is also important to include the carer and Child Safety Officer’s contact details in the referral to avoid missed appointments if wait times are lengthy. With 97% of children in care having health problems, an integrated care approach is vital to ensuring every child and young person in care has the best chance of reaching their full potential.
By working together and sharing information, knowledge and expertise, we can make a real difference to the lives of children and young people in out-of-home care.