Health workforce shortage must be addressed - Kelly
Sinn Fein Spokesperson for Children and Young People Catherine Kelly has called for workforce shortages to be addressed following news of a backlog in child annual reviews in the Western Trust.
The West Tyrone MLA said:
"It is very concerning that due to a shortage of Health Visitors almost 700 one and two year olds across the Western Trust have not had their annual review."
"Health Visitors play a very important role in delivering better health and wellbeing outcomes through early intervention."
"They provide excellent support and advice to parents, particularly to first-time parents, and in working with families they can identify health and development problems with young children."
"In that context it is really important that every child gets their annual review from their Health Visitor."
"The backlog in annual reviews shows the need for effective recruitment and retention of Health Visitors in the short term and a workforce strategy to ensure the sustainability of the service moving forward."
"Health Visitors, and Health and Social Care staff generally, are the Health Service's greatest asset and they must be properly supported to continue to deliver a high standard of care to the community.”