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Health visitor workforce motivated by making a difference to children and families

3rd August 2013


New research, completed by the National Nursing Research Unit (NNRU) at King’s College London, reveals that health visitors are motivated by a primary desire to make a difference to children and families.


The research, led by Dr Karen Whittaker and funded by the Department of Health Policy Research Programme, reveals that students and practitioners remain committed to their career choice, even in periods of heightened workload pressures, when service managers and practice teachers shape working and learning environments in ways consistent with health visitor’s ideology of practice.


The NNRU’s findings come ahead of NHS England, Health Education England and the three London LETBs’ campaign to promote Health Visiting as a career in London. This is part of NHS England’s regional response to the DH “Health Visitor Implementation plan”, however the recruitment and retention of Health Visitors is known to be a priority issue across many areas in the country.


The full report, Start and Stay: The Recruitment and Retention of Health Visitors, is available to download at


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