Health (early years)
Find out about health services on offer in Wiltshire for those in the SEND community.
If you are looking for other services that are not SEND specific, visit MECC Link which signposts you to lots of Wiltshire health and wellbeing services in one place.
Urgent and Emergency Care (UEC)
Urgent and Emergency Care (UEC) services perform a critical role in keeping the population healthy. The NHS responds to more than 110 million urgent calls or visits every year, so it is essential that the system works effectively.
Both urgent and emergency care services play a specific part in supporting patients to receive the right care, by the right person, as quickly as possible.
Emergency care involves life-threatening illnesses or accidents which require immediate treatment from the ambulance service (via calling 999) and an emergency department (A&E).
An ambulance will take you to the closest A&E with capacity to deal with your immediate needs. For example if you are in Trowbridge that might be Bath Emergency Department / A&E (ruh.nhs.uk) or, closer to Salisbury, they are served by Salisbury Emergency Department / A&E (salisbury.nhs.uk).
NHS 111 is there to make it easier and quicker for patients to get the right advice or treatment they need, be that for their physical or mental health.
In many cases NHS 111 clinicians and call advisors can give patients the advice they need without using another service, such as their GP or A&E.
NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. You can access this service by calling 111, or going to NHS 111 online.
To find out more about NHS 111, visit NHS England: About NHS 111.
Wiltshire Health and Care provides services from six community hospital sites. Three of these hospitals have inpatient wards: Chippenham, Warminster and Savernake. There are Minor Injury Units at the Chippenham and Trowbridge hospital sites.
For more information on these Hospitals, and their services, visit Community hospitals (wiltshirehealthandcare.nhs.uk).
Support for newborn babies and families
In Wiltshire you can also be supported by the Health Visiting service who will help ensure the best start in life for your child.
The Health Visiting service provides advice and support to all families with a pre-school child in Wiltshire (0 to 5 years).
The Health Visiting Service is a team of qualified professionals who can offer support to families from pregnancy to school age with any health-related issues. These can be related to family emotional well-being; infant feeding advice; adjusting to parenthood; child development; speech and language or just general evidence-based advice and support to give your child the best start in life.
They deliver the Healthy Child Programme where they offer contacts at 5 key points:
- antenatal period
- new birth visit
- 6 to 8 weeks
- 9 to 11 months
- 27 to 30 months
They see families both at home and in local community venues.
Families are welcome to attend their Healthy Child Drop-ins which run across Wiltshire and all the information is on our website.
They can be contacted from Monday to Friday for telephone advice and support between the hours of 9am and 5pm on 0300 247 0090.
Information on a variety of topics can be found on our website:
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit HCRG Care Group: Health Visiting (Wiltshire Children's Services:).
As your child develops you may notice they need more support with certain activities or may seem to be developing more slowly in certain areas. It is important to discuss this with the health professionals you regularly check in with like your GP or health visitors, they may suggest contacting one of the following teams. You may also want to look into the the EHC assessments which includes an Early Support Hub in its process.
Any health professional currently working with your child, including Paediatricians or therapists, will talk to you about your child's difficulties and inform you if they believe that your child may have special needs. This could be in a variety of different areas e.g., learning delay, communication difficulties or physical difficulties. They will ask your permission to notify the Council of this. If another professional has already asked your permission, then you will be able to let them know.
Health professionals and health bodies have a legal duty under legislation.gov.uk: Children and Families Act 2014 section 23 to notify the Local Authority of any child under 5, who they consider may need some extra arrangements made for them when they start school and has or is likely to have Special Educational Needs or a Disability (SEND). This will help them work together and to improve services for families. The Local Authority will use this information to help them to plan ahead for services across Wiltshire and provide enough provision to meet the needs of children and young people with SEND.
Health professionals working with early years children have a legal duty to:
- inform parents/guardians that they believe their child has (or is likely to have) SEND
- arrange for parents to discuss this opinion with an appropriate health professional
- advise parent/guardians of organisations that may be able to support them - visit Advice and support
This process does not automatically guarantee extra help for the child. Children develop and change greatly during their pre-school years so a child may improve and not actually need much extra support. This identification is to help planning on a wide scale and those working with the child will discuss what is necessary and available support.
Community Paediatrics is a team of children's doctors in Wiltshire who see children and young people, and their families, in the community. They investigate and diagnose a range of difficulties including Autism, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) and delayed development.
Our Paediatricians listen to, assess and decide the best way to help children with a developmental impairment, physical and/or learning disability or complex health needs (e.g., Autism or Cerebral Palsy).
They also carry out specialist assessments of school-age children; where there is a concern regarding a neuro-developmental disorder, for example, Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) or Autistic Spectrum Disorders (ASDs).
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Community Paediatrics (wiltshirechildrensservices.co.uk).
The Community Children's Learning Disability Health Service is a specialist team of learning disability nurses and support worker that are commissioned to support children aged 0 to 18 years with a moderate to severe learning disability. These children have significant cognitive delay and usually have access to specialist nursery provision, Portage, or have an Educational Health Care Plan.
The service undertakes assessments in the home and provides support to improve sleep, behaviour including antisocial and sexualised behaviour, emotional literacy such as anger and anxiety management, faddy eating, and the behavioural aspects of daily living skills development such as delayed toilet training.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Learning Disability Health Service.
Wiltshire Children's Community Audiology Service is a team of specialist paediatric audiologists and experienced clinical support staff, supported by our administrative team. Our community-based service provides hearing assessment for any child referred from birth to 16 years old, or 19 years old if they have Special Educational Needs. They also assess and care for any child with permanent hearing loss requiring monitoring of hearing and communication development.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Children’s Community Audiology.
Swindon Paediatric Audiology provides a comprehensive, family friendly, integrated screening, diagnostic and rehabilitation service, for babies, children and young adults with hearing difficulties.
They are a highly skilled and experienced team that aims to enable children to reach their full social and educational potential via identification and appropriate management of hearing impairment.
The Paediatric Community Audiology service offers open referral for any child up to the age of eighteen years; this means anyone can refer children if there is concern about the child's hearing or communication difficulties including parents and guardians.
- comprehensive and developmental age appropriate hearing assessments
- newborn hearing screening for all newborn babies
- electro-physiological diagnostic assessment under natural sleep or general anaesthetic
- parental support and advice
- management of permanent and temporary hearing loss through ongoing monitoring of hearing, provision of modern digital hearing aid technology and follow up after care
- long term monitoring of young people at risk of developing hearing impairment
- onward referral to other specialist services if required
- working in collaboration with ENT doctors, health visitors, school nurses and specialist education teams
- transition to Adult service which aims to prepare young adults for the adult hearing aid service and to provide support through the move to further education and/or employment
- final transfer to the Adult Hearing Aid Service does not take place until the young adult is ready, usually once they have started full time employment; this can occur between the ages of 17 and 25 and is a decision made by the young person and their clinician
They offer clinics for hearing assessment at:
- West Swindon Health Centre
- Great Western Hospital
To find out more visit Great Western Hospitals (GWH): Audiology.
Paediatric Audiology is based in the Children's Outpatient's department on level 3, near the Sarum Entrance of Salisbury District Hospital. The majority of our appointments will be located in Children's Outpatient's but older children may be seen in Adult Audiology, also on Level 3 near the Main Entrance of the hospital.
They assess the hearing of children from birth to 18 years old. They also assess and monitor children who have a permanent or a temporary hearing loss and may wear hearing aids, up until they finish full time education.
For further information you can email firstname.lastname@example.org or telephone 01722 429335.
The Wiltshire Autism Assessment Service (WAAS) is an assessment-only service for children who are showing signs of possible autism. The service offers a number of different assessment pathways which are selected based on each child's needs.
Once a referral to the service has been accepted, families will receive an initial telephone consultation with an autism practitioner to discuss next steps in detail and to explain where to find support for the child and family's needs. Families of children who have been accepted to the service can sign up to receive the monthly email newsletter from the service, by contacting the Single Point of Access 0300 247 0090.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Wiltshire Autism Assessment Service (WAAS).
It is hugely beneficial to get support as early as possible once a need has been identified. This helps prepare a child for the next steps in their journey in life and learning in the best possible way.
The Wiltshire Speech and Language Therapy team supports parents, families, teaching staff, child-minders, and early years staff across Wiltshire. They offer support to children aged 0 to 18 years, who experience problems with their voice, speech, language, communication, stammering, or have swallowing difficulties. They do this by working on communication, understanding, talking, and speech sounds.
The service also provides formal and informal training to support the Team Around the Child to best meet the communication needs of each child and young person and works closely with preschools and schools across the Wiltshire community
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Speech and Language Therapy (HCRG Care Group).
For more information about selective mutism support in Wiltshire please visit:
The Wiltshire Integrated Therapies Service is a unique team of qualified Physiotherapists, Occupational Therapists, and Therapy Assistants who pride themselves in their multi-disciplinary approach to meet the therapy needs of children and young people from 0 to18 years, in the Wiltshire area.
The therapists support children and young people to participate as fully as possible in everyday activities where emotional, psychological, or physical difficulties might hinder their ability to grow, learn, socialise and play. The team provide assessments as well as intervention to help children and young people to get the most from life and achieve their potential.
The importance of each child's individuality is at the core of the services offered to families, with the aim to make assessments and interventions fun and engaging. Working together enables therapists to meet the child's goals and individual needs.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Integrated Therapies.
A community nursing service for children and young people 0 to 18 years who have a diagnosis that is life limiting/threatening, or long term and complex, and where there is an active nursing need that requires monitoring and nursing support in the community. This includes end of life planning and nursing care.
Our team also provides specialist training on enteral feeding (the delivery of food into the body if the child is unable to receive food by mouth), meeting respiratory needs, and anaphylaxis and administration of buccal midazolam (for which school staff can receive training, if provided by the School Nursing Service).
To find out more about what they offer, or how to refer, visit https://wiltshirechildrensservices.co.uk/ or call our Single Point of Access on 0300 247 0090 and ask to speak to the duty Community Children's Nurse. For further information on community nursing, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Children’s Community Nursing.
Other supporting health services
Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services (CAMHS) is an NHS service that helps children and young people under the age of 18 years.
They provide assessment and support to children, young people and their families who are experiencing moderate to severe mental health difficulties.
To find out more please visit:
A service for children and young people aged 0 to 18 years who have been assessed and meet Children's Continuing Health Care.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Children’s Continuing Care.
Referrals for palliative care and hospices advice will usually come from continuing healthcare professionals already working with children and young people. You can find additional support and information on Together for short lives (togetherforshortlives.org.uk). On the site there are helplines and information about support on the various stages of healthcare need.
Close to Wiltshire is the Bristol Royal Hospital for Children which is a potential point of referral to their Paediatric Palliative Care and Bereavement Support team (uhbristol.nhs.uk).
You may also find it useful to complete the form for the recommended summary plan for emergency care and treatment (ReSPECT) which has been implemented across BaNES, Swindon and Wiltshire from 4 October 2021. The ReSPECT form documents a patient's personalised recommendations for their clinical care and treatment in a future emergency in which they are unable to make or express choices. It replaces and builds on information held in a Treatment Escalation Plan.
Julia's House is not a typical children's hospice. They provide practical and emotional support for families caring for a child with a life-limiting or life-threatening condition, providing frequent and regular support in their own homes, in the community or at their hospices.
For more information please visit: Julia's House (juliashouse.org)
Naomi House and Jacksplace
Naomi House and Jacksplace are hospices supporting life limited and life threatened children and young adults. When a child or young adult is diagnosed with a life limiting condition, Naomi House and Jacksplace can become their home from home. Their nursing, care, play and family support teams are experts in delivering the crucial emotional, spiritual, developmental, clinical and holistic care that children and young adults with some of the most complex medical needs require.
They offer vital respite support, giving families the chance to recharge their batteries and regroup in a calm, fun and welcoming environment. In times of emergency they are there, giving families the help they need through difficult times. And at the end of a child or young adult's life, they pull out all the stops to give them a peaceful and dignified end, surrounded by loved ones.
For more information please visit: Naomi House (naomihouse.org.uk).
Helen & Douglas House
Helen & Douglas House helps local families cope with the challenges of looking after a terminally ill baby or child who will die prematurely.
Helen & Douglas House is a homely place for local children, living with life-limiting and terminal conditions, and their families. They provide care in a warm, loving environment. Their hospice is filled with laughter, whilst also being peaceful place where families can create happy memories in their last days, weeks, months or years together.
For more information please visit: Helen & Douglas House (helenanddouglas.org.uk).
Charlton Farm aims to help and support families who face the emotional and physical strain of caring for children who, sadly, are not expected to live into adulthood. This does not make Charlton Farm a sad place, although sadnesses are faced together. Charlton Farm is a place of love, happiness and friendship. They hope to provide a haven, a place where children and their families can be nurtured and cosseted, returning home with renewed vigour and a sense of anticipation for the next visit.
For more information please visit: Charlton Farm - children's Hospice (chsw.org.uk).
Jessie May - Home Support
Specialist Jessie May nurses provide at home nursing and respite care for children and young people that have a terminal or life-limiting condition throughout the South West.
They have been providing free specialist at home support since 1996, and it is only through the generosity of their supporters that they can continue to be there for families for many years to come.
For more information please visit: Jessie May - Hospice at Home (jessiemay.org.uk).
The Children's Bladder and Bowel Service is a nurse led service that assesses the needs of children who have daytime or night-time wetting, or who experience constipation following first line intervention from their GP. The service provides containment products for school age children who are incontinent day and night, and are working towards toilet training or are assessed as requiring products long term to meet their need.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit Wiltshire Children's Services: Bladder and Bowel.
The Children Looked After (CLA) Health team provides support and assessment for all children and young people who come into care. When a child or young person comes into care, they will have an Initial Health Assessment (IHA) - this is a statutory health assessment that is required to be completed within 28 days of coming into care. It is completed by a paediatrician or an appropriately trained medical practitioner.
A healthcare plan will be developed and shared with the young person and professionals around them. After this the child or young person's health is reviewed by specialist nurses who include specialist CLA nurses, health visitors and school nurses once or twice a year.
To find out more or to find out how to refer, visit HCRG Care Group: Looked after children's service LAC (Wiltshire Children's Services).
Wiltshire Health and Care
Wiltshire Health and Care (WHC) is a partnership focused solely on delivering improved community services in Wiltshire. Their services include, but are not limited to, the following:
- minor injuries
- wheelchair access
- community hospitals
To find out more please visit: Wiltshire Health and Care: Our services.
If you did not find what you are looking for please get in touch via our contact us page, feedback helps us improve our services and information.
Dynamic support registers (DSRs) and Care (Education) and Treatment Reviews (C(E)TRs) are essential elements of the pathway providing people with a learning disability and autistic people with appropriate support and care at the right time - so that they can lead the lives they want to and meet their ambitions and aspirations; and can stay safely and healthily in the community or return to this as soon as possible.
The purpose of the Dynamic Support Register (DSR) is to identify people who with appropriate, proactive intervention and support can be prevented from unnecessary or inappropriate admission to mental health or specialist hospitals.
The DSR process enables an opportunity for communication where a person's support needs can be reviewed, and issues escalated where appropriate.
To find out more visit:
A personal budget is the money Wiltshire Council allocates to an individual to meet their assessed support needs.
An outcome based assessment will be carried out to establish an approximate figure for how much the council would need to spend to meet an individual's needs.
A personal health budget is the money that can be made available to a child or young person with complex, long-term and/or life-limiting health conditions, who is assessed as needing continuing health care.
100% of continuing care eligible children (under 18s) are offered a Personal Health Budget as a mechanism to deliver personalised care.
Currently there are 14 eligible children in Wiltshire, 9 of which have their care provided via a Personal Health Budget.
7 of these children have EHCPs. The primary offer is a Personal Health Budget, there is no application process per se. Not all Parents/Carers would seek this route, instead preferring to take up existing community care packages.