Conference delegate Leona Flett, offers us an insight into a day in the life of a trainee health visitor.
Arrive at the office at 8.30am, greet all the team. We need to answer any voicemails and emails and document them in client notes. I usually head over to the maternity unit for 9.00am to collect information on postnatal discharges and new pregnancy booking information.I return to the health visitor’s office and allocate the new discharges (now primary visits) to the relevant health visitors. We then arrange to visit the primaries within four days at home. My mentor and I have a primary visit planned for 11.00am. We fill out her paperwork prior to the visit, answer any new emails and phone calls that come through in the morning. I also prepare the clinic room for the 27 month review clinic in the afternoon.
We arrive at the primary visit at 11.00am. We discuss with the mother her delivery and the postnatal period so far, and allow for any questions. We discuss the child personal health record (red book), allowing the woman to see where we plot weights and other measurements. We weigh the baby, perform head circumference measurement and length and plot these in the red book. We also discuss the new parent pack that consists of new baby groups, contact information, SIDS, feeding. Again, allowing the woman to ask any questions. We arrange to return the following week and say our goodbyes.
We arrive at a home to perform a 6 month review that had been pre-arranged. We perform the review and complete the paper work and allow the mother to ask any questions. She expresses concerns re sleeping patterns, we offer her support from a local agency that deals with sleeping patterns and she accepts. We then return to the office and make the referral, send the newborn and 6 month paperwork to child health services.
After a lunch break, we have four, 27 month reviews booked in. The first one does not turn up, so we call the parents, and they have forgotten the appointment, so we rearrange for next week. The next three arrive and all go smoothly, with no concerns to report. We answer any parent questions prior to them leaving. Their paperwork is sent to child health services also.
We go back to the office and call to arrange other appointments for the week. Check the voicemail and emails again, answering the queries. We then pull our client notes for the immunisation clinic the following day and store them in the locked drawer. We finally leave the office.