Health Visiting Service Greenwich

The health visiting service provides an inclusive universal service to families from the antenatal period until their child enters school. The service provides a child and family focussed service to promote health and prevent ill health working with both individuals and communities and dealing with issues regarding local population health.

The health visiting team consists of nursery nurses, breastfeeding advocates and clerical officers and is led by the health visitors who are also known as specialist community public health nurses (SCPHN). They work in partnership with GPs and other healthcare professionals, social workers, children’s centre staff and various statutory and voluntary agencies to ensure that clients are supported to meet the challenges of effective parenting.

The service is delivered between 9am and 5pm Monday to Friday from health centres, clinics and children’s centres. The team also make home visits.

How to access the service

Health visiting is a universal service for all families with children under five, who live in, or are registered with a GP, in Greenwich.

Breastfeeding support

Greenwich Health Visiting service is fully accredited as Baby Friendly by UNICEF UK. Health visitors, nursery nurses and breastfeeding advocates are fully trained to support parents with feeding and caring for their babies. Additional support is available in the Greenwich breastfeeding groups, further details are here.

Health Advice:

Families who would like to speak to a health visitor about any concerns they may have regarding their baby or child’s health or development, or who wish to request support from the health visitor can attend the weekly’ Health Visitor Advice session’ in their local Children’s Centre area.

Nursery Nurse-led:
Families who would like to have their baby weighed and ask for advice on routine issues such as introducing solids, sleeping or home safety can attend one of the two health drop in sessions in their area. Each session will last for three hours.

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Services provided

  • Health visiting service

Related Information

Public phone number:

East Team
Gallions Reach Health Centre
020 8836 8621

West Team
Greenwich Centre
020 8836 8621

South Team
Kidbrooke Village Centre
020 8836 8621

Tewson Team
Plumstead Health Centre
020 8836 8621

Central Team
Highpoint House
020 8836 8621

Email address:

oxl-tr.cat@nhs.net

13 Comments

I think it is terrible and very shortsighted that Greenwich have stopped the 12 month health review. You are sacrificing the health of babies for a quick win of saving money. Offering a clinic instead assumes a parent or carer is able to recognise that there is something wrong with their child in the first place. Its a disgrace.

Dear Alison

Oxleas has been commissioned to provide the new 0-19 years public health nursing service in Greenwich. The new service commenced on 1st September, with a programme of developments to the way services are delivered.

Our new Health Advice Sessions are delivered across Greenwich every day of the week, from Monday morning to Friday afternoon, and all families can attend these sessions to discuss their child’s health and progress.

In addition, Greenwich has introduced a series of ‘Key touchpoints’ beginning during pregnancy and continuing through the early weeks of life and throughout the school years.

There are new options for families to access the key touchpoints, and our teams will ensure that each child and family has at least three face to face key touchpoint contacts before their child starts school. Many children will receive up to seven face to face key touchpoint contacts, and our health visitors and school nurses will also be offering families addition, personalised support at times of need.

At each of the key touchpoint times for 0-4 years, families will receive an email providing health and development related information, with links to online resources.
In the case of the 10-12 month review, all families will receive the email or a letter, with an invitation to bring their baby to the Health Advice Session to discuss their progress. If any concerns are identified a face to face review of the baby’s health and development will be arranged.

The service will be developing further options for providing key touchpoint contact, and opportunities to seek advice if parents have concerns about their child, which will include online services such as virtual nurse through Skype. Many families have expressed their preference for online or instant contact in this way.

If you would like to discuss this matter further, please feel free to email me at stephen.whitmore@nhs.net.

Kind regards

Stephen Whitmore
Director of Children and Young People's Services

Dear Sir/Madam,

As I live in Grove Park, could you tell me the best centre to attend so that I can get my little one weighed please?

It doesn't let me do a postcode search to find it myself!
Thanks so much!

Hi Zara

Grove Park is a Lewisham address, not Oxleas.The nearest Lewisham clinic is 37 Marvels Lane Grove Park SE12 8NP.

kind regards

Tony (Comms)

I would like to say that I think that it is more than unfortunate that the one year review, previously undertaken in the home by a Health Visitor, has been replaced by an email.

Dear Veronica

The service from health visitors changed last September to offer a new way of offering our services. In the past, one year reviews were occasionally completed at parents’ homes, but also in clinics, Children’s Centres and GP surgeries.

A series of ‘Key touchpoints’ have been introduced, beginning during pregnancy and continuing through the early weeks of life and throughout the school years.

There are new options for families to access the key touchpoints, and our teams will ensure that each child and family has at least three face to face key touchpoint contacts before their child starts school. Many children will receive up to seven face to face key touchpoint contacts, and our health visitors and school nurses will also be offering some families additional, personalised support at times of need.

At each of the key touchpoint times for 0-4 years, families will receive an email providing health and development related information, with links to online resources.

In the case of the 10-12 month review, all families will receive the email or a letter, with an invitation to bring their baby to the Health Advice Session to discuss their progress. If any concerns are identified a face to face review of the baby’s health and development will be arranged.

If you have any concerns, we can offer a one year review, or if you would like to attend your local HV health advice drop-in we will be pleased to offer any advice or support you need.

Please feel free to contact me on 020 3260 5185, or email me at helen.day-barnes@nhs.net if you would like to discuss this further.

Best wishes

Helen Day Barnes
Service Manager
Public Health Nursing Services

My baby is now over 13 months old and we've not been told anything about the one year review being cut?? Certainly haven't received an email or letter. Why is this? And where can I get my baby checked over and measured??

I have now received an email with a very short description of some milestones my 14 month should be reaching. This is supposed to be instead of their 10-12 month review, it is not an adequate replacement for a thorough check by a qualified health professional. Plus I only got the email as I rang the Oxleas kidbrooke medical centre to ask why I hadnt heard anything about my childs review. I really think it is awful that you have stopped these face to face reviews and that you havent contacted parents in the area to explain this. Why have all the people commenting here not received this letter you repeatedly say we are being sent? I think that something has obviously not worked with this change.
Are there going to be any reviews before they starts school? Are you also stopping the 2 year one for a email or possible drop in?
I really feel that this is going to be doing a lot of harm to the care of children in our area and think it is very sad that the people who really need your help will possibly miss out of spotting health or developmental issues early in their children.

Dear Laura

Thank you for raising this concern with us.

For most parents where no previous concerns have been apparent or raised with us, we are sending an email describing the expected milestones your one year old baby might be reaching, these are also described in the Redbook, or parent-held record which you were given when your baby was born. We will have met you in our advice sessions, when you moved into the area, or when your baby was born, and will already have an idea of whether support is needed.

The intention is that if you have any concerns we would ask you to talk to a health visitor in a health advice session, and if required a face to face development review will be offered. For most parents there are no concerns and a formal review face to face is not necessary.

I am now aware that there have been some delays in sending letters to parents, and we will improve this. We will also alter our letter to parents in the light of your concerns, making it more explicit that if you wish a face to face review, this is available to you as an option.

We are now reviewing the one year review for most children ,based on the views of parents and our staff and we intend to clearly offer all parents a face to face one year review if they wish it and we will be inviting parents to phone and book their review.

If our health visitors or nursery nurses are already working with a family and there are developmental concerns we offer a routine face to face developmental review for all these babies. If a family is not known to us, or has not met one of our staff, it is usual to offer a face to face review also. This we hope will ensure that any potential delays or concerns are spotted early.

The next developmental review is at between 24 and 30 months; this is offered to all toddlers, usually in a nursery or children's centre and shares information with the nursery class. This review is based on a questionnaire which is sent to you, followed by an appointment. This review is in more depth than in the past and is an important pre-school check.

I hope this will reassure you of the service we are offering to all parents in Greenwich.

Kind regards

Helen Day Barnes
Service Manager
Public Health Nursing Services

Where can I do the 2 year old check up?

I am living in (postcode removed for website).

Dear Ana

The 2 year review is an Integrated health and development check which is offered by your local health visiting team (Central HV Team). They take place in local Children's Centres which in your case will be either Eglinton or Mulgrave Children's Centres. It is an opportunity to talk about you child's progress, learn more about what you can do to help their development and make sure you have the support you need.

The Central Team are currently offering appointments for children in their area between 27 - 30 months of age.

You and your child will receive an invitation to attend for the 2 year review by post. Two weeks before your child's appointment you will be sent an ASQ-3 and ASQ3 SE questionnaires to complete and bring along to your appointment. The questionnaires look at children’s communication skills, their balance and how well they use their arms, legs, hands and fingers (i.e. gross and fine motor skills), problem-solving skills, and their personal social and emotional development.

In the meantime should you wish to speak to a Health Visitor you can drop in to your nearest Health Advice Session which is held each Thursday morning between 09.30 and 12.30 at Eglinton Children's Centre.

You can contact Central Health Visiting Team by telephone:
020 8836 8621

Kind regards

Maureen Makin
Operational Lead Nurse (Health Visiting)

Hi there, I was wondering where is the closest place to get my 15 months weight. I'm living in SE28 near by Woolwich station. I used to get her to Discovery Children centre but as far as I know doesn't have anymore.

Dear Jenifer

Thank you for your enquiry. Your nearest health advice session is held at Discovery Children's Centre - this is led by a nursery nurse, and you can have your baby weighed there.

If you would like to talk to an health visitor we hold a health advice session at Brookhill Children's Centre on a Monday morning, Eglinton Children's Centre on a Thursday morning or the Waterways Children's Centre on Friday afternoons.

Best wishes

Helen Day-Barnes
Service Manager

Hi, The day you have weighins in my area (se28) I work and so i am unable to get to get her weighed. I don't drive so it is hard for me to get anywhere else.

What is the best way to get her weighed please ?

Dear Sanel

Thank you for taking the time to post your query.

Our East Health Visiting team offer three health visitor or nursery nurse led Health Advice Sessions per week, across the Abbey Wood and Thamesmead area.

These are Discovery Children’s Centre, Battery Road, on Mondays 12.30 – 3.30, Abbey Wood Children’s Centre, Dahlia Road, on Wednesday 12.30 – 3.30 and Waterways Children’s Centre, Bentham Road, on Friday 12 – 3 pm.

If none of these sessions are convenient for you, you are very welcome to use any of the other health advice session that we offer across Greenwich. The full time table is available on our website, and the sessions that might be most convenient to you are:

Brookhill Children’s Centre, Brookhill Road Woolwich on Monday 9.30 – 12.30

Or Cardwell Children’s Centre, 118 Frances Street Woolwich on Tuesday 1 – 4 pm

You may also find that there is a session being held near to your work place or childcare, and you would be welcomed by the health visitors and nursery nurses at any session that you find convenient.

Below is the most up to date guidance on weighing babies and young children:

Weights measured too closely together are often misleading, so babies should be weighed no more than:

once a month from 2 weeks to 6 months of age
once every two months from 6 to 12 months of age
once every three months over the age of 1 year.

However, most children do not need to be weighed this often; families are very welcome to attend for advice without having their baby weighed.

kind regards

Ellen Shelly
Head of Public Health Nursing 0-4 years

Dear Oxleas,

I do agree with other parents about the lack of communication since all the changes have been introduced.

Over the last months I had to call several times to have news about appointments/need to communicate with my health visitor. I had even to call my Health Centre as I couldn't contact my health visitor.

Moreover it's not that comfortable to attend 3h sessions with babies.

Although I tend to be prepared by myself, could you please tell me which is the nearest place where those sessions are held in my area? I live very close to Rachel McMillan Children Centre.

Best regards,
Carla

After phoning to inquire about my daughters one year check, I was disappointed to hear that these no longer took place. I can appreciate that budgets are tight & cut backs need to be made, but I feel this is an important milestone for babies to be checked at. I also believe that the removal of this check puts more babies of those parents who may require support that won't come forward for the voluntary clinics at risk. Lewisham have not made these changes, so why have you? The pre-school starting checks are often too late for children that may have slipped under the radar.

Dear Claire

Thank you for taking the time to send us your feedback about the changes to our service. The views of local families are very important to Oxleas, and we strive to make improvements based on the feedback we receive.

Our health visitor teams offer to see young children and the families at ‘key touch point’ times which include: before the baby is born, when the baby is 10-14 days old, and 6-8 weeks after birth.

When babies are 10-12 months old we send all parents age-related health promotion advice and information, and invite them to attend their local Health Advice Session. Face to face health and development reviews at this time are available where parents or professionals have a concern about a baby. We also offer every 2 year old child a full integrated health and development review, in partnership with their local childcare provider, if they are attending a nursery or children’s centre. (2-2.5 year review)

We have well-developed pathways to help us to identify and reach out to families who may not come forward for the health care that they need, but are always reviewing the way the service is delivered, and the feedback we receive so that we are alert to improvements that can be made.

Please do attend the Health Advice Session with your daughter, where you will be able to speak with the Health Visitor or Nursery Nurse about her progress. You will find the details of the Health Advice sessions in the ‘Timetable’ link of the Health Visiting Service page.

You are welcome to contact me if you would like to discuss this further,

Ellen Shelly
Head of Public Health Nursing 0-4 years

ellenshelly@nhs.net

Hi, my baby is now 13 months old and I have not received any letter or email regarding her 12 months review. I live in thamesmead, can u please tell me where can I get my baby checked over and measured?

Dear Kanwal,

Thank you for taking the time to post your query on our site.

I have responded to you privately, and hope that you are satisfied with the response.

Our service is moving to a system of using mainly email to communicate with families, however this is only possible where we have an up to date email address.

I was sorry to hear that you had not received the information we send to families when their baby is aged between 10-12 months.

According to our records, a letter was sent to you on 19th June, with a hard copy of our 10-12 month information email. This is a little later than we would have hoped for, and is because we did not hold an up to date email address for you.

I have now added your email address to our records, but it would be very helpful if you could advise the service if you change your email address, which will hopefully avoid you missing any other communications from the service.

I have sent you a copy of the timetable for our Health Advice Drop-in Sessions. We offer 15 drop-ins per week, across Greenwich, and you are welcome to attend any of these.

I have also sent you a copy of the email we send out to families when their baby is aged 10-12 months, with information, and the link to our Parent Online webpage where you will find information about child health and development, health promotion information or parents, and details of our health advice drop ins. You can also find this by Googling 'Greenwich Health Visiting'.

The Drop in sessions that are likely to be nearest to you are

Discovery Children's Centre, Battery Road SE28 Monday 12.30 - 3.30
Abbey Wood Children's Centre, Dahlia Road SE2 Wednesday 12.30 - 3.30
Waterways Children's Centre, Bentham Road SE28 Friday 12.00 - 3.00

At the Health Advice drop in, you can discuss your baby's health and developmental progress, and have your baby weighed if you wish. We follow the recommendation that length is not measured at 10-12 months, unless there is a concern about the baby's growth.

Ellen Shelly
Head of Public Health Nursing 0-4 years

Good afternoon,

My son has just turned 13 months old and I haven't received any of the letters or emails with the information to assess his development and progress as it is described in answers above.

I am aware that unfortunately, and unlike other boroughs, greenwich has decided to eliminate the one year review. It seems that the new replacing service is not working as expected as communications are poor. Can you please advise on how to proceed?

Dear Nerea,

I am sorry to hear that you have not yet received the 10-12 month information email or letter.

I will look into this for you, and respond privately.

In the meantime, you are very welcome to bring your son to any of our Health Advice Drop In sessions, to see the nursery nurse or health visitor.

The nearest nursery nurse led drop in sessions for you are:

Quaggy Children's Centre, Orchard Hill SE13 7QZ Tuesday 9.30 - 12.00

Robert Owen Children's Centre, Commerell Street SE10 0EA

If you usually use one of these Children's Centres, please check their timetables, as they do close for 1-2 weeks during the summer holiday.

There is also a health visitor advice drop in at Sherington Children's Centre, Wyndcliff Road SE7 7JP.

This is on Wednesdays 9.30 - 12.00, and the Children's Centre will not be closing during the summer.

Kind regards

Ellen Shelly
Head of Public Health Nursing 0-4 years

Please can I have a contact email for the health visiting team serving SE10. I need to get hold of them. Thank you

Hi Ruth

The email address for our central admin team is oxl-tr.cat@nhs.net

kind regards

Tony (Communications Team)

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