Morning, Tuesday, 15th December 2020
***Full-scale policy conference taking place online***
This conference will discuss the priorities for improving the health outcomes in babies and young children and the next steps for policy.
It is taking place as The Rt Hon Andrea Leadsom MP, Government's Early Years Health Adviser - who is a keynote speaker at this conference - leads a review into improving health outcomes in babies and young children as part of the Government’s levelling up policy agenda.
With the first phase of the review expected in early 2021, this conference will be an opportunity for stakeholders to discuss the priorities and latest thinking on improving health outcomes.
The discussion is bringing together stakeholders with key policy officials who are due to attend from DHSC and the DfE.
- The priorities for improving health outcomes for babies and young children
- Understanding the importance of the first 1,000 days in child development
- Improving child public health, reducing inequalities and the impact of social adversity in childhood
- Identifying measures for supporting vulnerable and disadvantaged young children and families - and learning from the COVID-19 pandemic
- Priorities for system-wide collaboration to address underlying health inequalities and key opportunities for improving health outcomes in young children going forward
- Next steps for the commissioning of health services for children in the early stages of life
- Improving health outcomes for young children across health and care - integrating services, care pathways, workforce training, and partnership working
Areas for discussion:
- addressing inequalities - the overriding focus for the review, looking at birth to age 2½
- the first 1,000 days - their importance in a child’s physical, emotional and social development, and opportunity throughout life, and priorities for tackling the barriers experienced in these areas
- underlying factors - understanding the social determinants of health and their impact on child development
- support - what more can be done for children from disadvantaged families in the early years, and assessing the optimum time for intervention through maternity and parenting programmes
- The Best beginnings in the early years report from the Children’s Commissioner making recommendations to give all children in England the best start in life, including the national family and children hubs and an extended childcare offer
- service accessibility - priorities for developing care pathways and enabling the ease of movement between services
- collaboration - encouraging partnership working between pre- and postnatal services, the NHS, local authorities and the third sector - particularly to identify at risk groups earlier
- commissioning - how it can be improved for health services for children in the early stages of life
- policy coordination - how findings in the review can inform the focus and support progress in policy areas such as:
- the NHS Long Term plan - and its ambitions and targets for improving children’s health, including around maternity, mental health, access to services and weight management
- the Obesity Strategy - with plans for expansion of healthy weight management services and support, encouraging healthier food choices, and restriction of HFSS promotions and advertising
- the Health and Wellbeing Fund - with aims to improve outcomes for mothers and babies in deprived areas or from BAME backgrounds
- policy development - identifying priority measures that can support vulnerable young children and families
- COVID-19 - what can learned from the experience of children and the services that support their wellbeing - in the face of increased chances of poverty, changes to accommodation and limitations to support networks - that can be carried forward to improve policy and provision
Policy officials attending:
Our forums are known for attracting strong interest from policymakers and stakeholders. Places have been reserved by officials from the Department for Education; and the Department of Health and Social Care. Also due to attend are representatives from Action For Children; Birth Companions; Bridgewater Community Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust; Brighter Futures for Children; British Specialist Nutrition Association; CDH UK; Danone; Foster Care Associates; GreaterSport; Herefordshire Council; Imperial College Healthcare NHS Trust; King's College London; Kit Tarka Foundation; London Borough of Newham; North Lincolnshire Council; Parents1st; Pregnancy Sickness Support; Sheffield Hallam University; Suffolk County Council; The Human Milk Foundation; Thrive Agency on behalf of BabyCentre; University College Cork; University of Glasgow; and University of Nottingham.
Overall, we expect speakers and attendees to be a senior and informed group including Members of both Houses of Parliament, senior government and regulatory officials involved in this area of policy, as well as from public health and health professionals, children’s centres, nursery staff, local authorities, nutrition specialists, nurses and general health practitioners, mental health practitioners, parent groups, third sector groups, representatives of citizen and interest groups, academics, and think tanks, together with reporters from the national and specialist media.
This is a full-scale conference taking place online***
- full, four-hour programme including comfort breaks - you’ll also get a full recording to refer back to
- information-rich discussion involving key policymakers and stakeholders
- conference materials provided in advance, including speaker biographies
- speakers presenting via webcam, accompanied by slides if they wish, using the Cisco WebEx professional online conference platform (easy for delegates - we’ll provide full details)
- opportunities for live delegate questions and comments with all speakers
- a recording of the addresses, all slides cleared by speakers, and further materials, is made available to all delegates afterwards as a permanent record of the proceedings
- delegates are able to add their own written comments and articles following the conference, to be distributed to all attendees and more widely
- networking too - there will be opportunities for delegates to e-meet and interact - we’ll tell you how!
Full information and guidance on how to take part will be sent to delegates before the conferenc