Life changing early support available for more young families
More vulnerable families will be offered one to one support from dedicated family nurses, as the Government’s goal of expanding to 16,000 places on the Family Nurse Partnership is reached.
This expertly delivered, evidence-based preventive service has been shown to transform lives and offer a better alternative to expensive late intervention. In 2013, the Government committed to increase the number of Family Nurse Partnership (FNP) places available in England at any one time from 11,000 to at least 16,000 by March 2015. With 135 local authorities across England now delivering the service, many of the most vulnerable young people will benefit, helping to break the cycle of deprivation for them and their babies.
Parliamentary Under Secretary of State for Health, Dan Poulter said: “This is a great achievement and will ensure more young, vulnerable mothers get vital one-to-one support from highly-trained family nurses.
“This government's commitment to the Family Nurse Partnership will help children and their families to get the best start in life.”
FNP has been operating for eight years in England and is, in many areas, now well embedded in services for children, families and young people. The service is an integral part of many local authorities’ early help offer and forms an important part of wider preventive public health services for young families, working closely alongside health visiting, social care and other children’s services.
FNP National Unit Director, Ailsa Swarbrick said: “From Brighton to Cumbria, Liverpool to Great Yarmouth, FNP is giving young parents a chance to transform their own life chances and those of their babies so they can thrive and flourish. Family nurses offer the unique combination of a warm and trusting relationship between the nurse and young parent, coupled with a carefully designed programme, which enables real learning and creates positive behaviour change. They work alongside young mothers and fathers to harness the powerful intrinsic motivation within us to protect our young, thus breaking the cycle of disadvantage.”
The double generation outcomes are clear. Family nurses recognise that young parents are the experts in their own lives, while respectfully exploring alternatives to beliefs, life style choices, and behaviours with them so that they are in a strong position to make informed decisions about what’s best for themselves and their babies.
Every FNP team across England has played its part in getting the programme to this point, both as part of the pioneering first wave that began its journey back in 2007 when the programme was first brought to England, and the fresh new family nurses who have just joined FNP. Their energy, enthusiasm, tenacity, and the passion with which they believe in the young mums and dads they support are fundamental to the programme.
The FNP National Unit is housed within the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust as part of a consortium, supported by the Impetus Trust and Social Research Unit at Dartington (SRU).
Last updated on 30 May 2019.
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