Health Visitors

A Health Visitors role is a varied one and is an integral part of the NHS Community Health Service. The main focus of our work is prevention, helping people to stay healthy and avoid illness.

The Health Visitor is a Qualified Registered Nurse, Midwife, Sick Children’s Nurse or Psychiatric Nurse with Specialist qualifications in Community Health, which includes child health, health promotion and education.

The role involves promoting health in the whole community and we are particularly involved with families who have children under five.

We look at the broader picture to identify the health needs within their community and this allows us to offer support or intervention when it is required.

Every family with children under five has a named health visitor. Our role is to offer support and encouragement to families through the early years from pregnancy and birth to primary school and beyond. We work closely with all members of the Primary Health Care Team.

Most health visitor’s work alongside midwives preparing parents for the birth of their baby by their involvement in pre-birth classes.

We also offer help and advice to parents on the following:

  • Their child’s growth & development
  • Common infections in childhood
  • Common skin problems
  • Behaviour difficulties. Sleeping, eating, potty training, temper tantrums and teething
  • Breastfeeding, weaning, healthy eating, hygiene, safety and exercise
  • Postnatal depression, bereavement and violence in the family

We are also involved in:

  • Working in partnership with families to tailor health plans to their needs
  • Coordinating child immunisation programmes
  • Organising and running baby clinics
  • Health promotion groups, Breast feeding support groups, Parent support groups, parenting courses
  • Nurse prescribing

Health visitors work closely with others such as: Speech Therapists, Social Workers, School Nurses, & District Nurses.

You can access your health visitor through your GP Surgery by phoning or dropping in at  your health centre or clinic to arrange an appointment or speak to a health visitor.

Annmarie Burgess PHN/Early Years Manager

Last Reviewed: 01/06/2011