This quality standard covers services to support the health, and social and emotional wellbeing of children under 5, including vulnerable children who may need extra support. It includes health visitor services, childcare and early years education, and early intervention services in children’s social care. It describes high-quality care in priority areas for improvement.

It does not cover clinical treatment, the role of child protection services or areas of national policy, such as free nursery places for children under 5.

How to use NICE quality standards and how we develop them

Quality standards help you improve the quality of care you provide or commission. Find out how to use quality standards and how we develop them. We check our quality standards every August to make sure they are up to date.