Child protection clinical network - protecting children, supporting clinicians (2010)

It is critically important that clinicians have appropriate skills and work with clear governance frameworks. The Department of Health and RCPCH jointly commissioned this project in response to concerns about the contribution of health services in protecting children and young people from harm.

This paper aims to establish the potential benefits and feasibility of clinical networks for child protection health services.

Managed clinical networks can:

  • provide robust arrangements across organisations
  • ensure equitable access to specialist advice
  • ensure access to high quality training, development and support
  • facilitate strategy development, governance and quality improvement.

The paper gives background information on the project and on the concept of clinical networks. It then explores the problem of inequitable access to specialist clinical skills and experience for the provision of advice on complex presentations to local clinicians, and for conducting Child Sexual Abuse (CSA) assessments.