Health Visiting

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Welcome to the Health Visiting Service and the Essex Child and Family Wellbeing Service

These services are made up of different professionals who all work together to help children and families have the best start in life.

You don’t need to be referred into the services, the teams will make contact with you. However, , if you do need extra support, you can contact them at any time. There are a variety of services available for children, young people, and families.

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Health Visiting

Meet the teams

Both teams are made up of experts with huge amounts of experience. You may find that their job titles vary depending on which area you live in, but here are some of the people you can expect to meet:

Health Visitors are qualified nurses and midwives who have additional specialist training to support families both during pregnancy and right up until your child is in their early years of primary school.

Family Wellbeing Nurses & Community Staff Nurses

are qualified nurses and midwives who carry out assessments of your child. They work closely with you to see if there is any extra support you may benefit from.

Healthy Family Support Practitioners, Healthy Child Practitioners & Family Hub Practitioners

are all professionals who have expertise in Early Years and Child Development. They carry out assessments of your child and also deliver guided workshops on a one-to-one basis or within a group setting. This usually happens in one of the family hubs or delivery sites and is likely to be your first point of contact with the hubs. Be sure to make use of their wealth of knowledge about available services within your community.

Essex child & family wellbeing Services

Health Visitors

Family Wellbeing Nurses

Healthy Family Support Practitioners

Family Hub Practitioners

Suffolk Community Health Team

Health Visitors

Community Staff Nurses

Healthy Child Practitioners

Support and Information Officers

Support and Information Officers

are based within the Family Hubs in Suffolk. You will probably be greeted by one of them at reception during your visit. They can inform you of what’s available at the hub and signpost you to other services within the community.

Accessing services within your community

Depending on where you live, you can access services through local Family Hubs and Delivery Sites.

Assisted self weigh sessions

Opportunity to drop in and weigh your baby, a support practitioner will be available to assist should you require further help, or have any questions relating to your baby’s development.

Infant feeding support

Our friendly staff are available to help and offer support with all types of Infant feeding.

Parent/carer & baby stay & play sessions

Fun sessions with different activities each week, meet with other local parents /carers and take the opportunity to seek support and advice from our specialist practitioners.

Toddler stay & play sessions

Drop in for a fun relaxed group, where parents and their children can socialise and enjoy play activities, crafts and singing.

Preparing for baby antenatal sessions

Drop in for a fun relaxed group, where parents and their children can socialise and enjoy play activities, crafts and singin

Family support and development reviews

Staff working in our Family Hubs work hard to ensure families are receiving the right support, at the right time, to help them thrive. development reviews allow us to identify any areas where families may require further support or guidance.

If you live in Essex or Suffolk you can choose to attend:

  • assisted self-weigh sessions and infant feeding support
  • parent/ carer and baby stay-and-play sessions and workshops
  • toddler sessions including stay-and-play sessions and workshops
  • Family Support and Development reviews
  • volunteering opportunities and community events

If you live in Essex you can choose to attend:

  • ‘Preparing for baby’ antenatal sessions

If you live in Suffolk you can choose to attend:

  • Services in outreach venues outside of Family Hubs

Members of the team will visit you at home or at one of the Family Hub or Delivery Sites. You may also be offered a video call. Here is when you can expect a visit:

Antenatal Contact

Services start from 28 weeks of pregnancy and continue providing all the expert advice that you and your family may need.

After your baby is born, a member of the team will usually contact you within the first 48 hours. If you live in Essex, you’ll be contacted by a Healthy Family Support Practitioner. If you live in Suffolk, you’ll be contacted by The Infant Feeding Team. Both teams will offer support with feeding your baby and will arrange your ‘New Birth Visit’.

New Birth Visit

When your baby is between 10 and 14 days old, you will be visited at home to see how you both are and how your health and well-being can be supported.

Follow-Up Contact

Around 6-8 weeks after birth, a member of the team will arrange a visit to talk through what’s going well and any concerns you may have. They will see you again to discuss your child’s development before they reach the age of one, and then again between the ages of two and three.

Both teams are there to help until your child is 19 years old, but if they have a special education need or disability, support can extend right up until they reach 25.

Both Essex and Suffolk teams, look forward to getting to know you and your family and always welcome the chance to work in partnership with you throughout your incredible parenting journey.

You can find more information about your local services here:

Essex Child and Family Wellbeing Services

Suffolk Health and Children’s Centre Services

Explanation point

Family Hubs and Delivery SitesPlaces where families, parents, carers, and young people can get support, access services, or be signposted to other organisations that are relevant to their personal needs.
Antenatalbefore birth; during or relating to pregnancy.
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