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Infant Mental Health

The following pathway should not be read as stand-alone and MUST be read in conjunction with Section 3: Pathways.

  • The Infant Mental Health pathway specifically needs to be considered in conjunction with the Parental Mental Health and Wellbeing pathway.
  • The pathway identifies early poor attachment issues and its management.

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Birth - 6 weeks

Maternal Death Birth - 6 weeks

Ensure appropriate care pathways in place for baby and family.

Midwifery

Notification of death to relevant professionals and organisations.

Maternal Death Birth - 6 weeks

Ensure appropriate care pathways in place for baby and family.

Midwifery

In partnership with SW/HV team and family Assess who will care for baby and support family and transfer as required to :

  • NICU
  • Post Natal Ward
  • Home with relative
  • Paediatric Ward

Maternal Death Birth - 6 weeks

Ensure appropriate ongoing and consistent care provision.

Midwifery

Discharge home notification to GP and HV.

Prior to 28 days midwife to visit, post 28 days referral to relevant community professionals.

3 - 6 weeks

Additional Visit following New Birth Visit and any Follow-up Visiting schedule.

In cases where there are identified significant concerns regarding parental bonding and attachment, parental emotional availability and inappropriate parental expectations.

Partnership working is imperative nevertheless this varies according to individual family need and consent to intervention.

Health Visiting

Develop an action plan based on targeted in-depth assessment of attachment and the need for additional parental support.
Plans may include:

  • Targeted in-depth education on the subject of attachment and baby brain development.
  • Signposting, liaison and information sharing and referral as appropriate to Children’s Centres,
  • Social Care, GP and/or other appropriate professionals and services.
  • The building of parental resilience through family support.
  • Management of parental mood concerns in partnership with parent/s and where appropriate
  • other specialist partners.

May need referral to e.g.

  • Evidenced based parenting programmes
  • Adult Mental Health Services
  • CBT groups facilitated by Mental Health Team
  • Substance misuse teams
  • Community drug and alcohol team
  • Parent-infant psychotherapy
  • Women’s Aid and delivery into hostel.
  • CRUSE for bereavement
  • Primary Infant Mental Health Services.
  • Encourage infant massage - undertaken at home, one to one.
  • Promote and facilitate social integration by signposting to Postnatal Health Promotion Group and
  • Children’s Centre groups.
  • Encourage use of media tools – social baby to promote sensitive, attuned parenting on an individual basis.

6 weeks - 6 months

6 weeks - 6 months

Additional Visits

In cases where there are identified significant concerns regarding parental bonding and attachment, parental emotional availability and inappropriate parental expectations.

Health Visiting

As above in 3 – 6 week age range plus:

  • Assessment child’s social, physical and emotional wellbeing / development.
  • Consider referral for Video Interactive Guidance (VIG) or locally commissioned attachment therapeutic groups via local Primary Infant Mental Health Services.

6 months - 1 year

6 months - 1 year

Additional Visits

In cases where there are identified significant concerns regarding parental bonding and attachment, parental emotional availability and inappropriate parental expectations.

Health Visiting

As above in 8 weeks – 6 months age range with the exception on Infant Massage.

Plus consider:

  • An assessment by the Child Development Unit to investigate if neurodevelopmental concerns.
  • Referral to Parent – Infant Psychotherapy.

Liaise with child care provider to ensure info sharing and observation

1 - 3 years

1 - 3 years

Additional Visits

In cases where there are identified significant concerns regarding parental bonding and attachment, parental emotional availability and inappropriate parental expectations.

Health Visiting

As above in 8 weeks – 6 months age range with the exception on Infant Massage.

Plus consider:

  • An assessment by the Child Development Unit to investigate if neurodevelopmental concerns.
  • Referral to Parent – Infant Psychotherapy.

Liaise with child care provider to ensure info sharing and observation.

3 - 5 years

3 - 5 years

Additional Visits

Health Visiting

As above in 8 weeks – 6 months age range.

Plus consider:

  • An assessment by the Child Development Unit to investigate if neurodevelopmental concerns.
  • Referral to Parent – Infant Psychotherapy.

Liaise with child care / education provider to ensure info sharing and observation.

3 - 5 years

Additional meetings or Special Education Needs (SEN) children

Health Visiting

Liaison with Specialist Team to ensure school transition is managed and any SEN assessments contributed to.

A CAF will be completed as part of the SEN profile.

3 - 5 years

Targeted Support

Facilitate Joint working and support integrated care planning

Primary Care & GP

Working with other key partners provide support for families with issues that are affecting Infant Mental Health.

Consider support and referral to specialist intervention services if required and monitor results and on going care plan in partnership with HV team.

Birth - 5 years

Core Purpose 2

Targeted support to reflect local demographic data and need e.g. teenage parents/travellers/ BME programme.

Childrens Centres & EYFS

Groups to reflect local demographic data and need e.g. teenage parents/travellers/ BME programme.

Promote parenting skills.

Promote health, wellbeing and positive mental health of mother.

Access for hard to reach families.

Birth - 5 years

Core Purpose 2

Promote parenting skills which facilitate early childhood development.

Childrens Centres & EYFS

Stay and play for specific groups (SEN & disabled children), children centre staff and other appropriate partners.

Promote parenting skills and provide enhanced support for family members.