Put children at the heart of public health reforms says forum

Putting children, young people and their families at the heart of what happens in the NHS and public health is one of the key themes which underpins recommendations from the Children and Young People’s Health Outcomes Forum.

Outcomes for children and young people will be improved if the wider health system pays more attention to inequality, according to the forum’s report which was published on 26 July 2012.

Childhood accidents are identified as one of the headline factors along with infant mortality, obesity and teenage pregnancy, which affect more children and young people from disadvantaged backgrounds.

The forum’s proposals include a revised Public Health Outcomes Framework indicator covering:

  • Hospital admissions and A&E attendances for accidental and unintended injuries; and non-accidental injuries, neglect and maltreatment in children and young people.

Proposed new indicators which have potential relevance to child accident prevention are:

  • Number of children and young people living in decent housing.
  • Children, young people and families have access to age-appropriate health information to support them to lead healthy lives.

The forum’s recommendations also cover:

  • The need for comprehensive data for all children and young people within the local Joint Strategic Needs Assessment (JSNA) The Department of Health (DH) has published separate Draft Guidance for consultation on JSNAs and Joint Health and Wellbeing Strategies.
  • Key success factors and challenges for health and wellbeing boards, including “a local partnership based round the needs of the whole local community, explicitly including children and young people, to be reflected in the governance of health and wellbeing boards”.
  • Leadership, workforce education, training and development.

The forum’s main report is supported by reports on public health and prevention and inequalities in health outcomes. There are additional factsheets on:

  • Making data and information work for children and young people 
  • School governors, reflecting the forum’s recommendation that the promotion of health and wellbeing should be included within the ‘statutory aims’ of the revised national curriculum. 
  • Health and wellbeing boards and children, young people and families.
  • Commissioning in the new NHS for children, young people and their families.

Following the forum’s report and recommendations, it is expected that the Government will publish a new Children and Young People’s Health Outcomes Strategy in autumn 2012.

Download the report

The Children and Young People’s Health Outcomes Forum report and supporting material can be downloaded from the DH’s website:

Related links

Updated August 2012