Aims An audit was undertaken to find out if British Association for Adoption and Fostering (BAAF) recommendations on health forms for initial assessments of Looked after children (LAC) were adhered to and to make recommendations to improve compliance.
Methods A retrospective audit was conducted between April 2009 and September 2009 and all LAC initial health assessments were included. Re-audit was conducted between April 2011 and August 2011. Practice note 47 (Using the BAAF Health assessment forms, September 2004) was used as standard. Information was gathered using proforma and case notes.
Results The 2009 audit results are summarised in the table 1. As performance was poor in completing the health forms (PH - Parental Health, consent and M/B - Maternal and neonatal health), following recommendations were made to improve practice:
LAC health team should work closer with Social workers (SW) to increase awareness of information required for health assessments.
Every effort should be made by SW to complete the forms at first point of contact with family.
If M/B details were not available from social worker, then Paediatrician should request this information from the hospital lead midwife where child was born.
A re-audit was conducted between April 2011 and August 2011. This showed significant improvements in obtaining PH and consent forms. However, obtaining M/B form remains a challenge.
Conclusion The audit clearly demonstrates that with team effort, significant improvements in practice can be achieved. The results were disseminated to the local LAC team and SW team and their efforts were appreciated. The LAC team is working closely with midwives at the local hospital to ensure improvement in completion of M/B forms.