SEND Local Offer for Coventry - An Introduction to Health Provision in Coventry

Health Services for children and young people with SEN or disabilities provide the following for children and young people:

  1. early identification
  2. assessment and diagnosis
  3. intervention and review.  

What health services are available?

There are many different health services available from acute hospital wards, to GPs to physiotherapists to immunisation nurses etc.

There are some health services that are more likely to be involved in supporting children and young people with SEN and/or disability. These services have different focuses;

  1. Public health services for children ensure a whole population approach to health and wellbeing including preventative service such as immunisations.  They will deliver universal services to all children at specific times and more targeted and specialist services when needed.  School nursing and health visiting services work in this way by providing screening and support at key times and offering individual interventions when needed.  School age immunisation services have an immunisation program directed by public health delivered to all schools in Coventry.
  2. Community Health Services support children who have a specialist health need or an emerging specialist health need in their communities.  These services are often delivered by Community Paediatricians, Psychiatrists, Nurses and Allied Health Professionals such as Occupational Therapists, Speech and Language Therapists, Physiotherapists and Psychologists. Children and young people can be referred into these services if a family or another professional had identified a need that meets individual service criteria.
  3. Some children and young people with specific specialist health needs may need Highly Specialist Children’s NHS Services provided by specialist regional or national providers. Referrals to these services will normally be made by the child or young person’s Paediatrician.
  4. All health providers have a responsibility to notify the local authority of any children under statutory school age who have or may have a SEN or disability, once discussed with the parents.

You will find out more about the health services which commonly work with children with SEN and/or disability within Coventry in their specific sections of the local offer.

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Health service provider

A health service provider is an organisation which holds contracts for delivering certain health services. Different providers will hold different responsibilities.  There is more than one provider of health services for children and young people in Coventry.
Providers local to Coventry are;

Private practitioners and third sector (charity) practitioners are also providers in their own right.

Health service commissioners

Commissioning organisations are responsible for planning, organising and buying services for the populations they serve. They will contract with providers to deliver specified services. 

The Designated Clinical Officer and Designated Medical Officer

The code of practice 2014 placed new statutory duties on clinical commissioning groups to contract services which specifically supported children and young people with SEN and/or disability.  This was to ensure local areas worked better together.

To help clinical commissioning groups undertake their new responsibilities, they appointed to a designated clinical officer (DCO) and/or designated medical officer (DMO).  These roles are undertaken by people with an appropriate level of knowledge and expertise of the health needs and systems of a local area.

Key responsibilities of these roles in Coventry are;

  • To provide a contact for local authorities, schools and colleges seeking health advice on children and young people who have or may have SEN and/or disabilities.
  • To support providers in their duty of notifying Coventry City Council of children under statutory school age who have or may have SEN and/or disability.
  • To support commissioners in meeting their statutory duties in commissioning services to meet the SEND agenda.

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