A contract to provide nursing to children and young people in West Sussex has been awarded to the Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust (SCFT).
From April the NHS trust will provide the 0-19 Public Health Community Nursing Service for families in the county following a competitive procurement run by West Sussex County Council.
The new contract runs for five years with an option for another two and aims to create a more integrated service bringing together health visiting, school nurses, and early help and prevention services into a single model.
The service will be extended to cover children and young people up to the age of 19 and working in partnership with charity Barnardo’s will provide a new Skills for Life service for people with special educational needs and disabilities aged up to 25 years.
There will also be investment in digital technologies to improve communication and engagement between young people, parents, carers ,and professionals.
SCFT is the existing provider of the Healthy Child Programme, which includes health visiting, school nursing, and the family nurse partnership.
Siobhan Melia, chief executive of Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust, said: “I am delighted that we have been awarded this contract and that the council has backed our vision for the future of this service.
“We are committed to ensuring that families and young people experience an extensive range of excellent, localised, seamless support and we look forward to working with the council to make this a reality for people in West Sussex.
“This decision shows the high-regard in which this service is held. It is a testament to the hard work, passion and dedication of our staff.”
Christine Field, the county council’s cabinet member for wellbeing, added: “We want our children, young people and their families to be healthy, happy, safe and ready for school and for life.
“Our vision is to have a joined up service, which all residents can access near to home.”
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