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Healthy futures for looked after children in England

Research published by the Local Authority Association looks at the health needs of looked after children and care leavers in England and how well these needs are met. The research found a number of common threads including:

  • Health (especially mental health) outcomes for looked after children are significantly worse than for the child population as a whole
  • There's significant local variation in outcomes as a result of differences in the organisation and effectiveness of services
  • It's essential to involve children and young people in their own health and wellbeing, and in improving services
  • Improving the mental health and wellbeing of young people is not just a job for CAMHS
  • Children, young people and families benefit most from an integrated approach which follows them through their ‘life journey’.
  • Children in care generally have fewer problems accessing services if they are placed in their ‘home’ authority
  • Early identification and support of health needs, particularly mental health needs, greatly reduces escalation of problems and the costs

The research focuses on seven case studies from across the country and highlights the good work and different projects going on.

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