FNP doesn’t stand still. We respond to evidence and monitor programme data. We adapt and improve the programme carefully, with a clear sense of what is fundamental to FNP. The licence sets out the core model elements of FNP. The underpinning theories of the programme, along with the theory of change, a skilled workforce and client feedback, enable us to evolve and improve the programme confidently in context.


We share what we learn through the implementation and development of FNP and through our work with vulnerable families: at a national level within the Office for Health Inequalities and Disparities; with colleagues in other government departments, and within local systems where FNP teams are based.


A brief history of FNP in England 


  • 2007 - FNP is introduced into 10 areas in England.

  • 2008 - Fist publication from a formative evaluation of FNP in England led by Jacqueline Barnes, Birkbeck, University of London

  • 2009 - Cardiff University begins to recruit mothers into an RCT study about FNP in England, Building Blocks 0-2. A nationwide FNP data system established by the FNP National Unit.

  • 2015 - FNP commissioning moves into local authorities from the NHS, alongside other public health services, including health visiting, school nursing and sexual health services. Building Blocks 0-2 publishes.

  • 2016 - FNP ADAPT, a programme adaptation project begins. Changes made to eligibility criteria in response to Building Blocks 0-2 findings enable local areas to target the programme to vulnerable young mothers up to 24 years of age.

  • 2017 - FNP programme data shows an increase in the vulnerability of clients recruited to the programme over time.

    • 40% of the FNP clients reported a history of abuse and neglect in 2017 compared to 26% in 2009.

    • 37% of FNP clients reported a history of mental health problems in 2017 compared to 14% in 2009.

    • 69% of FNP clients were not in education, employment and training (NEET) at intake in 2017 compared to 49% in 2009.

  • 2018 - Knowledge & Skills Exchange programme enables FNP teams to deliver sessions to 3,192 professionals working with children and families in 2018/19.

  • 2019 - FNP ADAPT project ends, preparations made for England-wide roll-out of programme improvements.

  • 2020 - A more personalised FNP programme is made available across England.  A new improved data system gives FNP teams real-time access to their reporting data while reducing administrative burden. FNP teams find a range of solutions to enable them to continue work with vulnerable young families during the Covid-19 pandemic. The FNP National Unit is integrated in Public Health England’s Nursing, Maternity and Early Years directorate.

  • 2021 - Building Blocks 2-6 study about medium term impact of FNP for children publishes. The FNP National Unit transitions into the Chief Public Health Nurse directorate within the Office for Health Improvement and Disparities, part of the Department of Health and Social Care.


Current development projects 

  • Work will continue to implement learning from the ADAPT project: nationwide roll-out of neglect and intimate partner violence clinical adaptations.

  • Development project: to consider what ‘common elements’ in FNP and other intensive parenting support programmes enable vulnerable parents to provide responsive, sensitive care for their children to improve outcomes and reduce inequalities.


FNP studies and research


Accelerated design and programme testing


Knowledge and Skills Exchange

The National Unit

Main roles and teams


A variety of blog contributions from the whole FNP community