Quality statement 1: Coordinating action to prevent unintentional injuries

Quality statement

Local authority areas have a person responsible for coordinating action to prevent unintentional injuries in children and young people (under 15) in the home.

Rationale

Coordinated action across all relevant local agencies, including the development and delivery of local strategies, can be more effective when supported by a lead person in the local area. Coordinated action can prevent duplication of activity, improve record keeping and information sharing, and achieve better use of resources. In practice, risks identified by staff in one sector may be reduced more effectively by another sector if there is coordinated action.

Quality measures

Structure

a) Evidence that there is a designated person responsible for coordinating action among local authority departments, local NHS organisations and other local agencies to prevent unintentional injuries in children and young people (under 15) in the home.

Data source: Local data collection.

b) Evidence that local authority departments, local NHS organisations and other local agencies work in collaboration with a person responsible for coordinating local action to prevent unintentional injuries in children and young people (under 15) in the home.

Data source: Local data collection.

What the quality statement means for service providers, health, public health and social care practitioners, and commissioners

Service providers (such as local authority public health teams, local children's safeguarding board, children's social services and NHS organisations) collaborate with a person responsible for coordinating action across all local agencies to prevent unintentional injuries in children and young people (under 15) in the home. Service providers may also be jointly involved in designating the person responsible for local coordination along with local commissioners.

Health, public health and social care practitioners (such as GPs, health visitors, community nurses and midwives, social workers and health promotion workers) use frameworks and protocols that are led by the person who is responsible for coordinating action in their local area to prevent unintentional injuries in children and young people (under 15) in the home.

Commissioners (such as local authorities and clinical commissioning groups) ensure that they commission services that work in collaboration with a person responsible for coordinating action in their local area to prevent unintentional injuries in children and young people (under 15) in the home. Commissioners may be involved in designating the person responsible for coordinating action jointly with service providers and other local stakeholders.

What the quality statement means for the public

Households with children and young people (under 15) will benefit from locally coordinated action, led by a specially appointed person, to help prevent accidents in the home. This is particularly important for households with children under 5, who are at more risk of accidents in the home.

Source guidance

Definitions of terms used in this quality statement

Home

This term covers the dwelling where children and young people (under 15) live, the garden or yard, communal areas of flats, as well as other family homes where they visit or stay.

[Expert opinion]

Local authority areas

Action to prevent unintentional injuries to children and young people (under 15) is likely to be led by local authorities (including public health, social care and children's services). In their geographical areas, action should be coordinated with relevant NHS organisations (such as clinical commissioning groups), voluntary sector organisations, fire and rescue services.

Person responsible for coordinating action to prevent unintentional injuries to children and young people

A person with experience and expertise in injury prevention who has responsibility for helping achieve the commitments set out in local plans and strategies. Their responsibilities include:

  • Working with local partnerships that include organisations involved with children and young people, and their parents and carers.

  • Developing a 2- to 3‑year injury prevention strategy with local partners that is integrated into all relevant local plans and strategies for children and young people's health and wellbeing.

  • Networking at a regional and national level with other people responsible for coordinating action to prevent unintentional injuries to children and young people under 15.

  • Raising local awareness about the need for prevention activities. This includes working in line with local safeguarding protocols and acting as a local source of information and advice on prevention.

  • Monitoring progress made on the injury prevention commitments set out in local plans and strategies for children and young people's health and wellbeing. They should report progress to the director of children's services and/or the director of public health.

  • Providing and/or coordinating specialist training of anyone undertaking home safety assessments.

The person responsible for coordinating action to prevent unintentional injuries to children and young people does not have to be a full‑time post, but may be a role incorporated into the job description of a key worker from a local service.

[Adapted from Unintentional injuries: prevention strategies for under 15s (NICE guideline PH29), recommendation 2]