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Health Visiting

About health visiting

Health visitors are registered nurses and midwives with an additional community public health qualification. We offer support and practical advice on many aspects of child development as well as family health.

The Health Visiting Team works in partnership with children and families, as well as other professionals such as health, education, social care and voluntary organisations to provide health support which is tailored to individual needs. Our skill mix team comprises of staff nurses, registered nurses with training in maternal and child health, and nursery nurses who are qualified in child development and have relevant training in child-related issues such as sleep, behaviour issues and healthy eating.

We can provide locally designed health visiting services for all families with children under five in Bracknell, Wokingham, Reading and West Berkshire. We aim to help children get the best possible start in life.

Contacting us

Our health visiting duty line is available from 9am-4.30pm to offer health advice relating to your baby or child. Please use the number for your area below.

Bracknell:
 0300 365 6000 or email dutyhvbracknell@berkshire.nhs.uk
Wokingham: 0300 365 7000 or email: DutyHVWokingham@berkshire.nhs.uk
Reading: 0118 931 2111 or email HVWBRDGDuty@berkshire.nhs.uk
West Berkshire: 0300 303 3944 or email: HVWBRDGDuty@berkshire.nhs.uk   

If you are in Slough or Windsor and Maidenhead please see the Contact details section below for more information.

 

Wherever possible, the work of our team will continue although, in some cases, not in the way you may be used to.  

Until further notice, we will be reducing the Health Visiting service to new birth and 6-8 week checks, and these will mostly be undertaken as non face to face appointments.

Depending on your needs, this could include:

  • an online video consultation, similar to a Skype or WhatsApp call
  • consultation over the phone
  • professional advice on how to manage your own care

We will also continue to support families with additional needs, including those with multi-agency plans in place. In some cases we may make home visits.

A member of the team will contact you to decide on the right arrangements for you. There is no need to contact us.

Immunisations

It is important we all continue with childhood immunisation programmes, to avoid outbreaks of serious vaccine-preventable diseases that could increase the numbers of patients requiring health services.

Providing your baby and you as a parent or carer are well and not displaying symptoms of COVID-19 or other infections, routine childhood immunisations should proceed within GP surgeries.

Health visiting telephone support

We also continue to offer our Health Visiting Duty line, where you can seek advice and support on non COVID-19 related issues such as infant feeding support, weaning, behaviour, toilet training and sleeping. We will try to respond to all requests within 1 working day. Our health visiting duty line is available from 9am-4.30pm, Monday to Friday excluding Bank Holidays.

Our duty health visiting telephone numbers and emails are:

Bracknell: 0300 365 6000 or email: dutyhvbracknell@berkshire.nhs.uk

Wokingham: 0300 365 7000 or email: DutyHVWokingham@berkshire.nhs.uk

Reading: 0118 931 2111 or email: HVWBRDGDuty@berkshire.nhs.uk

West Berkshire: 0300 303 3944 or email: HVWBRDGDuty@berkshire.nhs.uk

 

We have lots of information on looking after your baby and keeping safe. Please see our support and advice pages.

Here are a few excellent resources that we have chosen to highlight to help keep your baby safe:

Lift the baby campaign covers why it is important to put your baby down to sleep safely. 

The Lullaby Trust has lots of advice on safer sleeping.

The NSPCC has produced advice on topics such as holding your baby safely and dealing with crying.

The Lullaby Trust has also produced lots of advice on safely looking after your baby during this time of coronavirus.

During the first five years of your child’s life, as part of your local Universal Healthy Child Programme, we provide:

  • Appointments to review your child’s health and development
  • Advice and support on subjects such as staying healthy, healthy eating and weaning, stopping smoking, feeding your baby, teething, immunisations, mental well-being and postnatal depression, your child’s growth and development, sleep, behaviour, fussy eating, potty training and common childhood illnesses

We offer further help for families and children who require additional support, for example with parenting skills, breastfeeding and childhood nutrition. We can also arrange support from other professionals.

The health visiting team will either see you in your home, at a Children Centre or another community venue. During your appointment we will offer information, advice and support as required and can refer you to other services if necessary. We will update your Personal Child Health Record (Red Book) and the HV record for your child as part of the appointment. 

The health visiting service will contact you before your baby is born.

You will be offered a routine appointment when your baby is two weeks old and again when your baby is 6-8 weeks old. 

When your baby is 9-12 months old and again at two years old you will be invited to meet a health visitor to review their health and development. 

You can see a member of the health visiting team at your local Child Health Clinic or contact us for any concerns or advice by phoning or emailing our duty advice lines.

Visit the NHS Conditions website for more information on your child health reviews and a video on what a health visitor does.

If your baby has a temperature of 38 degrees or above and especially if they are 3 months and under, PLEASE SEE YOUR GP

Due to the current Covid-19 outbreak, and because we want to keep both our patients and staff as safe as possible, we have made the decision to suspend our drop in well baby clinics, our antenatal group sessions and our Introducing Solids groups. We will move to an appointment only service.

If you have a concern or need advice and would like to speak to the Health Visiting team, please call the Health Visiting duty line for your area:

Bracknell Forest – 0300 365 6000 (9am – 1pm)

Wokingham – 0300 365 7000 (9am – 4.30pm)

Reading – 0118 931 2111 (9am – 4.30pm)

West Berkshire – 0300 303 3944 (9am – 4.30pm)

We will continue to keep this page updated as we get more information.

If you would like any more general advice about how to look after yourselves and your family, please go to the NHS England website or visit Gov.uk.

Our health visiting duty line is available from 9am-4.30pm to offer health advice relating to your baby or child. Please use the number for your area below.

Bracknell:
 0300 365 6000 or email dutyhvbracknell@berkshire.nhs.uk
Wokingham: 0300 365 7000 or email: DutyHVWokingham@berkshire.nhs.uk
Reading: 0118 931 2111 or email HVWBRDGDuty@berkshire.nhs.uk
West Berkshire: 0300 303 3944 or email: HVWBRDGDuty@berkshire.nhs.uk                                

Berkshire Healthcare do not provide Health Visiting services in Slough or Windsor and Maidenhead. Local contact details for services provided in these areas are:

Slough: 

01753 373464 / 0800 7723578

publichealthnursing.4slough@nhs.net 

+441753251085

www.publichealthnursing4slough.co.uk

Windsor and Maidenhead: 

Health visitor 0330 365 6523

School nurses 01628 682979

or via MASH 01628 683150 

www3.rbwm.gov.uk/publichealth

 

If you have used our health visiting service, your feedback would be appreciated as it will help us to develop and improve our services.