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J Adv Nurs. 1994 Jul;20(1):167-75.

The role of the health visitor in identifying and working with vulnerable families in relation to child protection: a review of the literature.

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  • 1School of Health and Human Sciences, University of Hertfordshire, England.

Abstract

This paper presents an overview of the research surrounding the role of the health visitor in identifying and working with vulnerable families in relation to child protection. Only a limited number of empirical studies have been completed within the field of health visiting, so this review draws on most of the literature published over the last 15 years, which is mainly British in origin. No previous reviews have focused on this specific area of health visiting. Clearly with the recent increase in public and official recognition of child protection issues and the continuing debate of health visitor involvement within this area, this review takes a significant step forward in drawing together relevant research. The review focuses on research within three main areas. Firstly, the health visitor's role in working with vulnerable families in relation to child protection is explored. The clients' perceptions of this role are also explored. Secondly, the identification of vulnerable families by health visitors and non-health visitors is explored. Within this area a number of studies by non-health visitors investigating screening approaches to child abuse have been reviewed, because they play such a major role in the literature and appear to have influenced subsequent health visitor research. Thirdly, a review of health visitors' preventive work with vulnerable families is completed.

PMID:
7930117
[PubMed - indexed for MEDLINE]
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