Here is an update summarising what Virgin Care are doing now in relation to our pre-birth to 19 provision during Covid-19:
- Our central points of contact and duty Health Visitors, School Nurses, Safeguarding and Looked After Children Nurses remain in place and are functioning as normal.
Do not hesitate to call us on:
Mid Essex Tel: 0300 247 0014 North Essex Tel: 0300 247 0015
South Essex Tel: 0300 247 0013 West Essex Tel: 0300 247 0122
- We are encouraging everyone to visit our website and Facebook pages to get the help they need. www.essexfamilywellbeing.co.uk
- We are continuing home visits to carry out New Birth (14-days after birth) contacts as normal. This will vary only for those who are self-isolating. They will receive a telephone assessment.
- We are now undertaking ‘Universal’ antenatal reviews, 6-8 week reviews, under one reviews and two-to-three year developmental reviews – which would normally be face-to-face – via telephone or video calls. Some families will still receive face-to-face contacts at home or in one of our designated sites.
- Infant feeding support will be done as a telephone contact unless significant issues arise, at which point we would offer a face-to-face contact if it is practical to do so.
- We are no longer encouraging parents to attend our Family Hubs and delivery sites to access the baby (self) weigh facilities. We are offering home weighs if parents have concerns. We have always aimed to adhere with the recommended guidance of weighing babies in the first two weeks (during our New Birth check) and then monthly thereafter (unless there is an indication to weigh more frequently). However, we have concluded that there is more risk to families, staff and the wider public by asking families or staff to make frequent journeys. We have issued notices to new parents with tips on monitoring healthy weight gain and development and will contact those who are worried and need our help.
- We are not be running any groups from our Family Hubs and delivery sites. However, these sites are still being accessed by our Midwifery partners, who continue conducting what they have marked as ‘essential’ face-to-face appointments.
- We will only be conducting face-to-face contacts with families in Family Hubs if there is a significant need that is relevant to immediate safety and risk of a child.
- We are working with Essex County Council to ensure all families in need know how to access the food banks available closest to them. We are publishing this information via our local Facebook pages in each district.
- School closures have resulted in face-to-face school drop-in clinics being replaced by telephone consultation and support via our CHAT Health text messaging service.