The Children and Families Act 2014 places statutory duties on NHS, health commissioners and providers to work together with the local authority to ensure that there is adequate and quality support services for children and young people with special educational needs and disability (0-25 years).
This support includes:
- Early identification of children and young people with SEND and notification to Suffolk County Council
- Early support offered to children, young people, and their families with SEND and support to others involved in their health care needs
- Develop effective ways to gain the views of children, young people and their families or their representatives
- Contribute to the education, health and care needs assessment led by the Suffolk County Council
- Work with Suffolk County Council to contribute to the SEND Local Offer. The Local Offer website aims to provide information on what services you can expect from local agencies including education, health, and social care.
- Work in partnership with Suffolk County Council, children, young people and their families to co-produce services to meet the identified health needs and to improve outcomes for children and young people with SEND.
NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group and NHS West Suffolk Clinical Commissioning Group have a Designated Clinical Officer (DCO) to support them and the health services they commission in meeting their statutory duties and responsibilities.
The primary role for the DCO is:
- Providing advice to local authorities, schools and colleges regarding the health needs of children and young people who may have special educational needs or disabilities, including navigating the local health system
- Providing a contact for health providers so that appropriate notification can be given to the local authority of children under compulsory school age who they think may have special educational needs or disabilities
- Supporting schools with their duties under the ‘Supporting Pupils with Medical Conditions’ guidance
- The DCO is not routinely involved in assessments or planning for individuals, except in the course of their usual clinical practice, but would be responsible for ensuring that assessment, planning and health support is carried out by health providers.
To contact the DCO for NHS Ipswich and East Suffolk CCG & NHS West Suffolk CCG, email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01473 264356
Suffolk County Council has published a SEND Local Offer which tells you about the support and services on offer to children and young people with SEND in their area.
You can read about Suffolk’s SEND Local Offer here