The child protection - information sharing project (CP-IS)

The Child Protection – Information Sharing project is an NHS England initiative that helps to deliver the Department of Health policy Making sure health and social care services work together. Birmingham City Council is a local authority partner.

CP-IS focuses on improving the protection of children who have previously been identified as vulnerable by social services when they visit the following NHS unscheduled care settings:

  • Emergency departments
  • Walk-in centres
  • Out of hours GPs
  • Minor injuries units
  • Paediatric wards
  • Maternity units
  • Ambulance services.

CP-IS provides health professionals with prompt and easy access to key social care information that can help them to assess whether a child is at risk.

The process of identifying children who have been maltreated, or are at risk of significant harm from abuse or neglect, during a single attendance remains difficult for even the most experienced clinician.

The ability to correctly diagnose abuse or neglect depends on having the whole picture. Giving clinicians in unscheduled care settings access to relevant social care information is essential to successfully identifying children who may be at risk.

The project links the IT systems of NHS unscheduled care to those used by social care child protection teams, so that information can be shared about three specific categories of child:

  • those with a child protection plan
  • those classed as looked after (i.e. children with full and interim care orders or voluntary care agreements)
  • any pregnant woman whose unborn child has a pre-birth protection plan.