Earlier in the year, FNP National Unit Director, Ailsa Swarbrick was invited to give evidence to the House of Commons Science and Technology Select Committee’s inquiry into evidence-based early-years intervention.
The committee has now published its final report. It calls on Government to develop “a new national strategy for early intervention approaches to address childhood adversity and trauma” with a focus on developing a better trained and defined early years workforce, better use of data and implementation science, and makes the case for long-term investment.
The report reflects on “significant concern within the early years community” about the outcomes chosen for the 2015 Building Blocks study about FNP. Commenting further on this, the committee states in its recommendations: “We therefore do not encourage national or local Government to act upon the study’s overall recommendation to discontinue provision of the Family Nurse Partnership.”
The report goes on highlight the ADAPT project:
“We commend the Family Nurse Partnership National Unit for implementing its ‘ADAPT’ initiative to learn from the study’s findings, and we urge local commissioners and providers to act upon the conclusions reached by this initiative.”
FNP National Unit Director Ailsa Swarbrick said: “Our work to lead the delivery of FNP in England has given us the opportunity to build a more nuanced understanding of evidence – how we use it, how we learn from it and how we put it into context. The committee’s report acknowledges this and we welcome its recognition of ADAPT."
“ADAPT is now in its second phase and involves almost 200 FNP practitioners, co-designing, rapidly testing and refining research-informed changes to FNP. Its continued development is providing us with rich data, further strengthening our ability to translate good evidence into practice at scale, and giving us a more in-depth understanding of vulnerabilities and levels of need, as well as testing new tools and resources to improve outcomes for young parents and their children.”
Norman Lamb, Chair of the Science and Technology Select Committee summed up the report by saying ‘When delivered effectively, there is strong evidence that early intervention can dramatically improve people’s lives, whilst also reducing long-term costs to the Government’.
Full recommendations from the report are published here.