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Health visitors access blood spot failsafe system

Posted by: , Posted on: - Categories: NHS Newborn Blood Spot Screening Programme

Parents in the North West can be more confident than ever that their newborn baby will be screened for a number of serious conditions after around 40 screening link health visitors (SLHVs) were given access to the newborn blood spot failsafe solution (NBSFS) for the first time.

The web-based IT solution helps maternity services identify babies who may have missed the blood spot test so prompt action can be taken.

We have now made the system available in the North West to the SLHVs – health visitors who have a particular responsibility for ensuring newborn screening is complete in the region.

The move to extend daily access to SLHVs will strengthen communication between maternity services and health visitors and also enable  timely communication of screening results to parents.

The benefits of SLHVs include:

  • closer communication with midwifery, laboratory and child health information systems
  • 'at a glance' alerts showing babies without screening results
  • reduced risk of babies missing screening
  • equitable access to screening for vulnerable families
  • additional failsafe amidst changes to health visitor commissioning and caseloads
  • reduced risk of serious incidents

Training success

Three days of training were held in mid-October at Bridgwater Community Healthcare NHS Trust in Greater Manchester. Demand was high but the trainers were able to accommodate all those interested. The feedback was very positive including the following feedback from an SLHV:

The system is wonderful and will be something I will definitely be using.

At the training, we discussed roles and responsibilities and raised two important points:

  1. if a baby is transferred into a health visitor’s care, why can’t they access that baby’s screening results if they are in a maternity unit that is not one of their designated sites?
    - the trainer showed the health visitors how to transfer the record into their site so that they could see the results
  2. inclusion of screening results for older babies would help to minimise gaps in the pathway
    - this data is not currently available in the Newborn Blood Spot Failsafe Solution (NBSFS) but will be in the future
Richard, Julie and Sheila with SLHVs Anne, Emma and Helen.
This is me (in the pink) attending a great training session at Bridgwater Community Healthcare NHS Trust with SLHVs Anne Stopford, Emma Vickers and Helen McCaffer - with help from Julie Wilcox, NBFS Project Lead from the NBS Programme and Richard Monaghan from the NBSF supplier, who delivered the training.

Thanks again to everyone for their enthusiasm during the training sessions and commitment to using the failsafe system!

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1 comment

  1. Comment by Sharon Webb posted on

    Congratulations Sheila and Julie excellent initiative.