Getting a good health check...
All children in care must be offered health assessments (health checks); twice a year for children under the age of 5 and once a year for children and young people over the age of 5. Your social worker arranges the health checks.
All children and young people in care age 5 and over, in Leicestershire and Rutland have their own specialist nurse.
You can find out who your specialist nurse is by telephoning
The first health assessment you have will be done by a specialist doctor (Community Paediatrician) after that, if you are age 5 or over you will be seen by your specialist nurse.
About 4-6 weeks after you have seen the Community Paediatrician your nurse will telephone you to give you her contact number so that, if you have any health worries, you can ring her.
You don't have to wait until your next health assessment to do this.
Things that worry you
Children and young people in care find it helpful to meet their specialist nurse to talk about a whole range of things about their health, that they don't understand or are worrying about.
Things like understanding how your body grows and changes, sexual health and relationships and worries about being pregnant. Eating well, and weight gain, worries about spots and skin problems, drugs or alcohol. Many young people have wanted to talk about trying to stop smoking, or that they are being bullied. Sharing your health worries with your nurse, who will listen to you, and give you information that helps you make decisions, can really help.
What happens at a health assessment with a nurse?
Find out below what you can expect during your health check.
Where will it take place?
It's important that you meet the nurse to do the health assessment somewhere you will feel comfortable talking about your health. This needs to be a safe place to meet, so, it could be your foster home or residential children's home, you may choose to meet at the GP surgery, hospital, children's centre, or at school.
Sharing what you tell us with other people
Your nurse will introduce themselves, and tell you and your carer what to expect at the appointment and depending on your age they may ask you to consent to the assessment and get you to sign the form to show you have agreed. You will not be expected to undress or be examined. They will tell you what information will be in the report and tell you who this will be shared with.
You can tell the nurse if you do not wish certain things you discuss with the nurse to be shared with other people. Doctors and other health professional will not share your health information unless they are worried that you may be in danger of harm. They will talk to you about this, and ask for your agreement to share the information.
What you'll be asked about
Before you go to the assessment it's good to have a think about anything that may be worrying you about your health that you would want to talk to the nurse about.
At the assessment, you will be asked lots of questions about, how you feel about things, whether you are being bullied, if you have any allergies, what exercise you take, how well you sleep, what foods you like to eat, your home and school life and when you last went to the dentist and optician. You will be asked to take your shoes off so the nurse can measure your height and weight. The nurse will ask if you have had all of your immunisation jabs. Dependent on your age you will be offered the opportunity to see the nurse on your own to discuss sexual health and relationships, and any other personal worries.
The nurse will write down all that you talk about into a report. This will be your health report. If you need to be referred to see another person for your health needs, the nurse will talk though what this means, who it is you are being referred to, and ask if you agree to this happening.
After the assessment the nurse will arrange to meet with you to talk about any ongoing health worries or health information you need.
Fun way to learn about health
Check out health for kids.