Somerset County Council’s Public Health Nursing (Health Visiting and School Nursing) team has been rated as ‘Good’ across all sections in a recent review of the service by inspectors at the Care Quality Commission (CQC).
The service provides community care, delivered by health visitors and school nurses across the county of Somerset and this inspection marks their first since its transfer from the NHS to Somerset County Council’s Public Health in 2019.
Inspectors observed staff demonstrating a caring and responsive approach with parents and young people and reported:
Staff treated children and young people with compassion and kindness, respected their privacy and dignity and took account of their individual needs. They provided emotional support to children and young people, families and carers. Parents told us staff were very attentive and would give them as much time as they needed. During observed interaction we saw they helped, comforted, supported and provided reassurance.
The report also recognised the efforts of the workforce to maintain high quality care and safeguarding, commenting on their ability to understand how to protect children and young people from abuse.
During the inspection, the inspection team spoke to more than 30 members of staff including heads of service, team managers, school nurses and health visitors.
Councillor Adam Dance, Lead Member for Public Health, Equalities and Diversity at Somerset County Council, said:
This is a positive evaluation and reflection of the continued work that Public Health Nursing colleagues do to provide children across Somerset with the best start in life. This inspection represents the remarkable and dedicated staff team and their ongoing work with families, preventing ill health, providing early intervention, parenting support and safeguarding.
The report demonstrates excellent practice, innovation and on-going quality and service improvements and puts us well on the way to Outstanding.
Council Leader, Councillor Bill Revans said:
This is the second core service in the County Council to receive a good rating this month after last week’s Good for Children’s Services. It shows our commitment to providing good services to residents and listening to their concerns. We see public health as central to our vision of people leading successful lives in Somerset. The service’s prevention work will remain a core part of our vision to improve the health and opportunities of Somerset’s people.
To read the full Care Quality Commission report, please visit Specialist Public Health Nursing Service – Care Quality Commission (cqc.org.uk).