Raising a Notification of Concern: Child Protection Service guidance for staff

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Objectives

NHS Greater Glasgow and Clyde (NHSGGC) recognises the key role health staff have in identifying children and young people who may have experienced or are at risk of harm.

This guidance is to promote staff awareness of their responsibilities within Child Protection and ensure they collaborate with statutory agencies.

To ensure NHSGGC guidance complies with the National Guidance for Child Protection (Scottish Government 2014) the Shared Referral Form is now identified as a Notification of Concern (NOC) form. 

Purpose of this guidance:

  • To ensure staff are aware of their responsibility in raising a NOC if they suspect a child or young person is experiencing, or is at risk of harm.
  • To outline required actions if a child or young person is in imminent danger.
  • To detail the process for raising a NOC.

Audience

This guidance applies to all employees and contracted staff within NHSGGC.

Where a member of staff is concerned about a child, even if the child is not their patient, they must act promptly on those concerns.

Child Protection concerns may be the result of a specific incident observed (child or parent/carer); a disclosure made by the child or parent/carer; certain behaviours of the parent/carer which may place their child at risk of harm; or may be the result of a culmination of minor concerns over a period of time.   

Concerns may also be in relation to an unborn child.

Social Work Services (SWS), together with Police Scotland (PS), have statutory responsibility for investigating Child Protection concerns and will be the first point

Who is a child?

The Children and Young People (Scotland) Act 2014 recognises children who are subject to compulsory measures of supervision on or after their sixteenth birthday are treated as children until they reach the age of 18, or the Order is terminated (whichever occurs first).

The National Guidance for Child Protection in Scotland (2014) states that the meaning of a child is extended to cover any person under the age of 18 in cases concerning: Human Trafficking; sexual abuse while in a position of trust (Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2009) and the sexual exploitation of children under the age of 18 (Protection of Children and Prevention of Sexual Offences (Scotland) Act 2005).

NHSGGC Process for Raising a NOC
  • When a NOC is raised the person doing so should inform local SWS and/or Police Scotland initially by telephone (if possible) clearly stating they are raising a possible Child Protection concern. (Appendix 1 – SWS telephone numbers, including out of hours contacts).
  • If a child or young person is in immediate danger staff should contact Police Scotland on 999.
  • A NOC must be completed and submitted within 48 hours following initial telephone call where possible. Support, if required, can be sought from their Line Manager and/or the Child Protection Service (CPS 0141 451 6605).
  • Staff should provide relevant and proportionate information about the child and family members known to them in relation to the concern being raised. Where information is not known, this should not prevent or delay the NOC being made.
  • The form is available electronically via Clinical Portal, EMIS and an electronic word document via staff net on the Child Protection Service website, accessed via the Corporate Services tab. This is the preferred process for sharing information.
  • Concerns and actions should be documented at the earliest opportunity within the child/young person’s health record and within the chronology of significant events.
  • Upon completion of a NOC form please:-
    • Retain one copy in the child’s record, i.e. on Portal and/or EMIS.
    • Email a copy to SWS (Appendix two).
    • Notify CPS     Admin Team   – either by Email (gg-uhb.CPadmin@nhs.net), via Task (for EMIS Users) or by telephoning: 0141 451 6605 (providing CHI number).
  • Only in exceptional circumstances would a family not be informed of a NOC being raised, for example, if staff felt at personal risk, or by doing so places the child/young person at additional risk.
  • When raising a NOC, if the referring practitioner disagrees with decisions made following submission then they should communicate further with key professionals e.g. Duty Senior Social Worker, Line Manager and/or Child Protection Service.

  • Children and Families Social Work have a responsibility to inform the person making the NOC of the outcome.

Following initial screening of the NOC received an Initial Referral Discussion

(IRD) may be undertaken by Social Work, Police Scotland and NHSGG&C Child Protection Service to share relevant information and make decisions in relation to the requirements for a Child Protection and/or Police investigation and consider if a medical assessment/examination is required.

Advice and support is available from NHSGGC Child Protection Service

Tel: 0141 451 6605        Monday-Friday: 09.00-17:00

Flowchart

* Either by Email (gg-uhb.CPadmin@nhs.net), Via Task (for EMIS Users) or by telephoning: 0141 451 6605 (providing CHI number).

Appendix 1: Social Work Area Teams Numbers

Typically SW offices are open-

  • Monday to Thursday inclusive: 8.45 am - 4.45 pm
  • Friday: 8.45 am - 3.55pm

Out with these times staff should contact Glasgow and Partners Emergency Social Work Service (Standby) on 0300-343-1505

Glasgow City

0141 287 0556

Glasgow Social Care Direct

 

Renfrewshire

0141 618 2535

 

 

 

Paisley

Johnstone

Renfrew

 

East Renfrewshire

0141 577 8300

 

 

Clarkston

Barrhead

 

East Dunbartonshire

0141 777 3000

0141 355 2200

Kirkintilloch

 

West Dunbartonshire

0141 562 8800

01389 608080

Clydebank

Dumbarton/Alexandria

 

Inverclyde

01475 715 365

01475 715 270

Greenock

Port Glasgow

 

Appendix 2: Secure email addresses for Children and Families teams to be used for email of child protection notification of concern forms
Editorial Information

Last reviewed: 24 October 2017

Next review: 24 October 2019

Author(s): Wendy Mitchell, Chief Nurse, Child Protection Service

Approved By: Child Protection Forum