The Institute of Health Visiting is delighted to announce the appointment of their first Director, Alison Morton, who joined the Institute today as Director of Policy and Quality.
Alison was one of the Institute’s first five Fellows. Her most recent role has been as Best Start in Life Programme Manager at Public Health England.
“I am delighted to be joining the Institute at a time when the spotlight is once again shining on the importance of the first few years of a child’s life as a foundation for future health and wellbeing. The evidence is clear that investing in early intervention and prevention is the right thing to do if we are serious about wanting every child to achieve their potential. Yet there remain persistent, unacceptable inequalities in outcomes for children from disadvantaged backgrounds and those with disabilities, as well as unwarranted variation in support for children and their families dependent on where they live. These inequalities result in poorer physical and mental health, academic achievement and employment prospects throughout the life-course.
“Whilst it can be tempting to invent a ‘new wheel’ when faced with a complex set of problems across society, I strongly believe that the health visiting service provides a crucial part of the ‘solution’ for a number of government departments who fund late intervention. Crucially, the evidence highlights the key role that the health visiting service plays in leading the delivery of the Healthy Child Programme (0-5 years), in partnership with a wide range of other agencies. I look forward to working with health visitors throughout the country and partners working in maternity and early years, as well as government departments, to strengthen the health visiting service and ensure that every child truly does have the ‘Best Start in Life’.”