Children in Oldham are benefiting from a better coordinated health service in their early years according to a report on the first year since Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust took over the running of the service.
The report on the Right Start service in the town presented by Oldham Council in the last month demonstrated that significant progress has been made since Bridgewater began providing the service in April 2016.
It describes seeing the ‘green shoots’ of improvements in outcomes for children who access the services and providing confidence for the future.
The Right Start service includes health visiting, children’s centres, family nurse partnership, school nurse service, early learning advisors, oral health and early years education. Bridgewater has brought the services and staff together under a new delivery model.
Achievement of key targets across the service has improved with the number of children reaching expected level of development increasing over the last year.
Amongst the points highlighted in the report includes the introduction of an electronic patient record has allowed better access to information across the service as well with a greater focus on agile working for staff so that they can input information from appointments directly on laptops to better record information on all children which can be accessed by other staff involved in the care provided to a child so that all teams will have access to the latest information.
This frees up more time to care for staff as they do not need to spend time completing paperwork and chasing records.
The service has also been selected to take part in a Greater Manchester digitalisation transformation project to look at new ways of improving efficiency in the service – a programme to ensure all historical data currently in paper files is available to practitioners electronically.
Over the coming 12 months, a new structure will be put in place following a consultation which includes the development of new roles across professional boundaries. More teams will be co-located as part of this work moving forward to further improve cross working between the teams.