Family Nurse Partnership (FNP) is a voluntary home visiting programme for first-time young mums and families, designed to help parents have a healthy pregnancy, improve their child’s health and development, plan their own futures and achieve their aspirations.

FNP provides intensive support for vulnerable first-time young mothers and their families, including those from highly disadvantaged areas and backgrounds (for example looked after children who are young parents). Young parents are paired with a specially trained family nurse who visits them regularly, from the early stages of pregnancy until their child is two. Through a psycho-educational approach and a focus on positive behaviour change, FNP enables young parents to:

  • Build positive relationships with their baby and understand their baby’s needs

  • Make positive lifestyle choices that will give their child the best possible start in life

  • Build their self-efficacy

  • Build positive relationships with others, modelled by building a positive relationship with the family nurse.

Clinical approaches 

The clinical approach underpinning FNP is strengths-based; nurses work alongside clients providing information and guidance about six specific domains relating to their pregnancy and parenthood.  Through this, they support them in making positive decisions about their lives and the life of their baby. The six key domains are:

  • Personal health

  • The maternal role

  • Life course development

  • Family/friends

  • Environmental health

  • Health and human services.

For many clients, a therapeutic relationship with a family nurse brings not only the delivery of the programme, but consistency and a positive role model that they may not have experienced before. FNP helps to control demand on local services by encouraging clients to engage with other appropriate services, managing and reducing safeguarding risks and, in cases where additional safeguarding support is necessary, ensuring that this is accessed quickly and effectively.

All family nurses receive reflective, restorative supervision from the family nurse supervisor, meeting regularly for supervision sessions which provides time to reflect and analyse the work with clients and to make robust plans to ensure that the needs of the baby remain paramount. Supervision also supports family nurses to consider how their feelings might influence decision-making around clients, helping to avoid ‘early evidence bias’.

The local teams

How FNP operates in sites across England

KSE

Knowledge and Skills Exchange

The programme

Theories that underpin FNP

Evidence 

FNP has an internationally-recognised evidence base