When a child is known to social services and is a Looked After Child or on a Child Protection Plan, basic information about that plan is shared securely with the NHS. If that child attends an NHS unscheduled care setting, such as an emergency department or a minor injury unit:
- the health team is alerted that they are on a plan and has access to the contact details for the social care team
- the social care team is automatically notified that the child has attended, and
- both parties can see details of the child's previous 25 visits to unscheduled care settings in England
This means that health and social care staff have a more complete picture of a child's interactions with health and social care services. This enables them to provide better care and earlier interventions for children who are considered vulnerable and at risk.
The CP-IS project is linking the IT systems used across health and social care and helping organisations to change business processes so this basic information can be shared securely between them. The information can only be accessed securely by trained professionals involved in a child's care.
It is endorsed by the Care Quality Commission (CQC) and is included in the key lines of enquiry during CQC inspections. It is also included in the standard contract for providers of NHS unscheduled care.