We are delighted that one of our members, Janine McKnight-Cowan, won the RCN Community and General Practice Nursing Award at last night’s RCN awards.

Janine, from Derbyshire Community Health Services NHS Foundation Trust, won the award for developing a tool to help health visitors explain to new mothers who’ve had a C-section as to why it’s important to take it easy.

She also presented her Five Guide for health visitors enhancing C-Section recovery on a poster at our evidence-based practice conference in May this year

As Janine says:

‘Five guide is so simple. For every lady who has a caesarean this has to be communicated. It is transferable for all health visitors, midwives and others. I now want to get this out as a national standard.’

Many congratulations Janine!



The Institute of Health Visiting supports the RCN/QNI call for reinvestment into district nursing after a shocking loss of district nurses over the past 10 years.

A new report from the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) and Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI) calls for urgent investment in District Nursing, as new figures show the number of District Nurses working in the NHS has dropped by almost 43 per cent in England alone in the last ten years.  As a result, there are only some 4,000 District Nurses providing care for a population of around 55.8 million in England, a ratio of only one District Nurse for every 14,000 people.  This compares with one GP for every 1,600 people.

The report, Outstanding Models of District Nursing, is published during the RCN’s annual Congress in Liverpool, where the 5,000 nursing staff attending include large numbers of District Nurses from around the UK.

Recent government strategy has called for more nursing care to be delivered in the community and in people’s homes in order to reduce patients’ lengths of stay in hospital and avoid unplanned admissions. The NHS Long Term Plan has identified the District Nursing service, which provides vital care for people in their own homes and in the community, as a key part of this strategy. However, government policies have not been followed by the investment needed to make the vision a reality, says the joint report.


The Royal College of Nursing (RCN), alongside over 20 health organisations including the Institute of Health Visiting, has published new safeguarding guidance for healthcare staff responsible for the care and protection of children and young people.

Safeguarding guide

Called ‘Safeguarding Children and Young People: Roles and Competencies for Healthcare Staff’, the document provides clear guidance to healthcare professionals on how to protect children and young people in their care and what to do in the event they come to harm.

All staff who come into contact with children and young people have a responsibility to safeguard and promote their welfare and should know what to do if they have concerns about safeguarding and child protection issues.

The latest document has been updated to include changes to legislation and statutory guidance in England and now includes education and learning logs to enable individuals to record their learning and form a ‘passport’ for those who move on to new jobs or other organisations.

We are delighted that our founding member and trustee, Professor Dame Sarah Cowley,  has been listed in the Nursing Standard/RCNi Celebration of 70 influential nurses and midwives from 1948 to 2018 – a list of nurses and midwives to celebrate 70 years of the NHS.

Sarah has had a distinguished career in health visiting and research culminating in being one of the four founders of the Institute.  In the 2013 New Year’s Honours List,  Sarah was awarded Dame Commander of the Order of the British Empire (DBE) in acknowledgement of her services to health visiting.

Dr Cheryll Adams CBE, Executive Director iHV, said:

“I am so delighted that Sarah has been chosen for this great honour which is thoroughly deserved. She had positively influenced the lives of many families and the careers of many health visitor researchers over her career.”

Professor Dame Sarah Cowley commented:

“I am honoured to be included amongst such luminaries.”

There is only one week left to apply for RCN Foundation Education Grants. You can apply for a grant of up to £5,000 to undertake an educational activity.

Current open schemes are:

Closing date is 31 May 2018 at 5pm.

We are thrilled that, during the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) Congress taking place this week in Belfast, a resolution by the RCN Congress to call on Council to lobby the UK Government to reverse the cuts in funding for Public Health Nurses was passed!

RCN members spoke on the cuts to health visiting and school nurses – creating a debate on the impact of the reduction of funding for public health and asking for the RCN to lobby the government.

The iHV is proud to sign a letter to The Times calling on the Government to secure funding for health visiting services – The nation’s health is at stake.

The letter from the Royal College of Nursing (RCN) calls on the Government to halt health visitor cuts, in order to prevent further deterioration of the nation’s health.

Five years since the launch of the Government’s Health Visitor Implementation Plan, which invested significant funds in training more that 4,000 new health visitors, posts are now being cut throughout England.

According to the latest workforce figures, the number of health visitors in England has been falling since the start of 2016, with a significant drop of 433 posts between March and April alone. Anecdotal evidence suggests that this drop is just the start of a significant reduction in the number of these crucial services, due to cuts in Local Authority budgets.

The RCN letter to The Times, signed by major health organisations including the RCPCH, the Queen’s Nursing Institute (QNI), the National Children’s Bureau and the iHV, calls for health visitor funding to be protected to secure remaining services and their major contribution to public health.

The letter aims to illustrate the crucial value of health visiting and the detrimental consequences cutting these services could have for children and families.

The letter’s publication corresponds to today’s RCN round-table event to collectively look at how to minimise the public health cuts.