Children and young people
This is Derron. Derron is 12 years old. He has type one diabetes and suffers with periods of anxiety.
Derron and his family get lots of support to manage his health needs at home. He uses apps to monitor his diabetes and help with his anxiety. They know where to go for advice and can recognise symptoms so they can get help quickly.
Derron goes to a clinic close to where he lives. The staff there work together to address all his physical and emotional needs. This joined-up care helps him to stay out of the hospital and enjoy life.
Healthcare services in Derron's community work closely with the local children's hospital. Clinicians involved in his care safely share information so they can make quick treatment decisions. If he does become unwell and needs to be admitted, he can return home quickly with support from specialists.
Derron feels confident about the care he receives and his family are positive about his long-term emotional development.
Every child and young person should feel as well supported as Derron.
Case for change
Services provided for children (sometimes called paediatrics) include specialist services in hospital and in the community. Children and young people access all services, not just those provided by specialist children's doctors and nurses. So, it is important that we remember their needs when considering other services, such as community based care, planned care, mental health or urgent and emergency care.
It is estimated that fewer than 50% of children in south east London are living healthy lives and around 44% of our young people experience inequalities or put their health at risk. This is because:
- south east London has higher than average rates of childhood obesity, undiagnosed mental health issues and teenage pregnancies.
- the number of young people is increasing, with around 27% living in poverty
- there is a shortage of specially trained paediatric nurses and child and adolescent mental health professionals
- sometimes our services don't meet the high quality standards we set ourselves.
- Better physical and emotional support for families.
- We want to get better at supporting families to keep children and young people physically and mentally well and out of hospital.
- We want to meet children's mental health needs no matter which service they visit.
- More joined-up health and care services
- We are developing integrated community teams of health professionals covering a range of services to support children and their families closer to home.
- Easy access to the right services first time
- We aim to make it as easy as possible for people to get the support they need quickly.
- Shorter inpatient stays in hospital and more support close to home - helping people return to their usual lives as soon as possible.
- Straightforward transition into adult services for young people with long-term conditions.