Supporting Parents Remotely During COVID-19

Supporting parents image

Date: 01 July 2020

COVID 19 has changed the way the NHS works with parents and only now are trusts beginning to put into place the new working practices that will define the service for the duration of the pandemic and perhaps beyond.

One of the greatest constraints is that professionals are reducing face to face interaction. In terms of child health this causes unique issues. Not only are professionals carrying out fewer face to face assessments of babies and children, but in many cases they are also disconnected from accessing the paper redbook and other paper records. This prevents them from sharing information with other professionals via the notes, discharge summaries and review pages of the redbook.

Concerns around remote working

In most areas of the UK the paper red book still forms a critical part of the professional to professional communication process. In many areas Midwives use the book to pass information on to the health visiting service when the parent is discharged by the midwifery service; and in many more, GPs and Health Visiting services have no direct communication link meaning the paper red book plays a significant part in providing joined up care. 

This has left services looking for a solution to these problems whilst working in very challenging circumstances.

Clinical safety is one of the key concerns raised by professionals when discussing remote working protocols. Specifically, in the case of paper child health records, ensuring professionals have visibility of all recent interactions between services and the parent of the child.  

Digital record sharing as a solution

There has been an acceleration of digital solutions across the NHS as a result of COVID 19 as services have to adapt quickly to the new reality. Child health is no exception. The eRedbook team have been part of this, working alongside trusts as they look to use technology to solve many of the problems described above.

eRedbook uniquely allows parents to share their child's records with professionals who can then see the data as parents are seeing it. Furthermore professionals can remotely add to the record during or after the consultation including

  • Adding a note of the information and advice given during the phone consultation
  • Sending links to useful online material
  • Adding weight and height data (enabling completion of a digital record where clinical record has been made)

In conclusion...

eRedbook can be an integral part of a remote working solution for Midwifery and Health Visiting services. The eRedbook team are available to speak to trusts about how they could incorporate eRedbook as part of a solution.

  • Summary:

    COVID 19 has changed the way the NHS works with parents and only now are trusts beginning to put into place the new working practices that will define the service for the duration of the pandemic and perhaps beyond.

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