Bradford Safeguarding Children Board mentoring

January 2012

Davina Hartley is accident prevention co-ordinator for Bradford Safeguarding Children Board (BSCB). CAPT has worked with Bradford on child accident prevention for a number of years, starting with an area mapping exercise which recommended the creation of the co-ordinator role.

Now, a new mentoring partnership with Making the Link is supporting Davina to update the injury prevention strategy, develop a Bradford-wide checklist and keep accident prevention high on the agenda across the district.

Maintaining a high profile for accident prevention

After joining BSCB in 2008, Davina set about developing the first child injury prevention strategy for the area. The strategy outlined the clear link between deprivation and childhood injuries and included the headline target of reducing the number of children killed or seriously injured due to all types of unintentional injury by 5% by 2011. You can find out more in our case study on the development of Bradford’s 2008-2011 accident prevention strategy.

In 2011 Bradford Children’s Trust launched an innovative child poverty strategy which integrates accident prevention as a key workstream – a step which aims to reduce the risk of accidents to children within vulnerable families. Childhood accidents are also now included as a category in the district’s joint strategic needs assessment (JSNA) which is updated each year.

Where they are now

Evaluating impact

Davina says that evaluating the impact of the injury prevention strategy has been quite difficult because of national problems with data coding for A&E attendances and hospital admissions. A new computerised data collection system was introduced in Bradford’s A&E department in 2011, so better coding on accidental injuries is now coming through.

“We know that hospital admissions have stabilised over the last few years and that road traffic injuries have been consistently falling. We met our target of cutting the number of children killed or seriously injured due to road traffic collisions by more than half by 2010,” explains Davina. “Assessing progress against the wider 5% target is proving complex as we’re having to compare two very different sets of data, from before and after the changes to the A&E data system. This is something we’ll continue working on 2012.”

Bradford was one of the largest participants in Safe at Home – the national home safety equipment scheme, managed by RoSPA – providing equipment to more than 2,500 local families and information to around five times that amount.

Securing mainstream funding

There is no central budget for accident prevention work in Bradford, instead funding for the various programmes and activities comes from many different agencies. Davina helps these agencies to target their funding effectively. She also looks for opportunities to secure mainstream funding for programmes wherever possible. One area where this has happened is with the Injury Minimisation Programme for Schools which is based at Bradford Royal Infirmary and funded by NHS Bradford and Airedale.

Updating the strategy

The original child injury prevention summary spanned 2008–11, so towards the end of 2011 Davina began the process of developing a new strategy for 2012 onwards. “The updated strategy will be based on the NICE guidance on reducing unintentional injuries to under-15s. It’ll be a shorter, more streamlined strategy, with a focus on actions. We won’t be doing such extensive consultation on the strategy itself this time around, but we will seek stakeholder input on the action plan.”

Aims for the future

Investigating data

During 2012 Davina will be working with the public health observatory in Bradford on a project to examine A&E data. “It’ll be the first time we’ve really been able to dig into A&E data – the poor quality of the coding prevented us doing this previously. We’ll be looking at the data on a ward by ward basis, to help us target our work in specific areas where there’s a high need for support.” Davina will also be working more closely with public health specialists on data collection, having recently established closer links between the injury prevention work group and public health teams.

Developing business cases

Data is also central to a project to develop business cases for the district’s accident prevention activities. Each business case will bring together examples of good practice, evaluations of local schemes or similar schemes run elsewhere in the country, and details of costs, outputs and outcomes. The aim is to create a formal record of the impact of each activity, which can be used to justify ongoing investment or to secure mainstream funding.

Building networks

Throughout 2012 Davina will continue to focus on building strong partnerships, which she says is the key to keeping injury prevention high on everyone’s agenda. “It’s about making sure that the lines of communication are always open and that everyone is on board with what we’re trying to achieve,” she explains. “I always aim to understand what each partner’s priorities are and how we can support them. It can be challenging to maintain relationships during times of major organisational change, but it’s important to keep working at it while also being aware of any constraints.”

How Making the Link's mentoring support will help

Shaping the strategic direction

Making the Link’s mentoring partnership with Bradford will focus on strengthening and embedding the links between child poverty and injury prevention. “The child poverty strategy is quite a new area for Bradford so there’s still a lot of work that can be done to embed accident prevention into the wider strategy,” says Mike Hayes, Head of Research and Development at CAPT. “We’re also looking forward to supporting Bradford with shaping their new injury prevention strategy and maintaining strong partnerships that place a high priority on accident prevention.”

Developing an accident prevention checklist

One task that CAPT will be supporting Davina and the injury prevention work group with is the development of an accident prevention checklist. “Checklists are already being used in the district, particularly by the children’s centres, but they’re not used consistently and they’re not used by all organisations that could be using them,” explains Davina.

CAPT will work with the injury prevention work group to develop a universal checklist that can be used by all organisations working with children and families in Bradford. The checklist will be launched at an event on 17 October 2012 – World Poverty Day – after which CAPT’s support will extend to rolling out and embedding the checklist across agencies in the district.

“Once the checklist is in use, the data will feed into an ‘early warning system’ database which all of the partners involved in Bradford Safeguarding Children Board can use to identify vulnerable families and provide the support they need as early as possible.”

Further information

For more information about Bradford’s child injury prevention strategy, please contact Davina Hartley ondavina.hartley@bradford.gov.uk

Related links

Updated February 2014