GPs to offer child safety advice under NICE guidance

GPs should offer child-focused home safety advice to families, according to NICE.

The advice is part of three pieces of guidance launched by NICE aimed at reducing childhood injuries and deaths. The guidance covers social and healthcare.

They advise that social and health workers, including GPs, who visit families with children under 15 should provide child-focused home safety advice.

If necessary, this should be followed by a referral to agencies that can conduct a home safety assessment and can supply and install home safety equipment.

Local authorities should also support GPs who visit children and young people at home to provide information to households that might need a home safety assessment.

Unintentional injury is a leading cause of death and serious injury in children and young people under 15 but many such incidents are avoidable, NICE advised.

The guidance includes strategies to prevent unintentional injuries; home safety assessments and the provision of safety equipment; and road design and modification.

Professor Mike Kelly, NICE Public Health Director, said: ‘We recommend that help should be offered to parents and carers who may not necessarily have the appropriate information or tools to identify risks in their homes or may not have the money to buy and install the right equipment.’

He added: ‘Our guidance on home safety assessments is about identifying and offering help to households at greatest risk.’

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