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Pioneering York health scheme launched for babies and young children

22 September 2021

Healthcare teams in York have come together to set up an innovative pilot scheme to help prevent babies and young children coming into hospital with breathing difficulties.

The pilot offers a bespoke and dedicated GP and paediatric nurse-led service, which will manage children under the age of two years with bronchiolitis, who do not need an admission to the Children’s Wards at the hospital. Instead, they will be seen by an experienced children’s nurse from York Hospital, working alongside a GP, in a child and family friendly ‘Hub’ at Askham Bar.

Sal Katib, Head of Children’s Nursing at York and Scarborough Teaching Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust explained: “In child health we are expecting a significant surge in demand for children less than two years of age with respiratory viruses and bronchiolitis. This is not unusual but this year it’s predicted to be very challenging due to the relaxation of social distancing measures, which during the last 18 months has reduced viral infections in children.

“To manage this predicted surge the idea for a community hub was agreed. The purpose is to manage those children who are not unwell enough to require a hospital admission, and to safely identify those who do.”

The pilot scheme, which will begin on 4 October, will follow set criteria which allow children who need further monitoring and assessment to be directed to the Askham Bar Healthcare Village. Once there, clinicians from Nimbuscare and a children’s nurse from the hospital will work with families and carers to monitor babies for up to six hours. The hub will be open from 4pm until 10pm each evening.

Ianthe Abbey, Consultant Paediatrician at the Trust, added: “The service, available during the early evening, will offer advice, assessment and a joined up approach between healthcare professionals. This will ensure that babies and young children receive the best possible care and advice at the right time, in the right place.”

The new ‘Paediatric Ambulatory Treatment Hub’ is a collaboration between York and Scarborough Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust, North Yorkshire Clinical Commissioning Group, Vale of York Clinical Commissioning Group and Nimbuscare.

Prof Mike Holmes, chair of Nimbuscare which represents all 11 York GP practices, said: “It’s been really great sitting down with our York partners to discuss another exciting new pilot service at our Health Village at Askham Bar.

“This is joint working at its best. Nimbuscare is so pleased to be part of this work to support children in our community so they get the best out of general practice and the speciality of paediatrics with a much more family centric approach.”

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