Emily Rounds, Professional Development Officer, Perinatal & Infant Mental Health
BNURs (Hons), SCPHN – HV, Registered Nurse – Child

Responsible for:

• Supporting the national and international work of the iHV Mental Health Department
• Supporting Head of Mental Health to develop iHV Perinatal & Infant Mental Health strategy, projects and practice development
• Supporting the production, delivery and quality assurance of iHV mental health training programmes
• Support engagement and co-production with parents and professionals in relation to mental health projects

Contact Emily – [email protected]

Tanya qualified as a Health Visitor in 1994. For the last 18 years, Tanya has worked in the field of Domestic Violence including providing support to several refuges and homeless accommodation. Tanya represents CNWL 0-19 services on Harrow MARAC. She is an active member of LB of Harrow Domestic Violence Forum and, as such, has contributed widely to the Domestic Violence agenda.

Tanya established ‘Fresh Start’, a therapeutic group for women and their children run in partnership with a psychologist, which aimed to provide support to those who have suffered from domestic violence. She is currently co-facilitating in partnership with Early Intervention Services Domestic Violence Recovery programme. She has contributed to the Department of Health NP 5: Domestic Violence and Abuse – Professional Guidance, as well as the ICO Domestic Violence Policy and, more recently, the UK Say No More – Hestia campaign. Tanya has presented at several national and international conferences, raising an awareness of Domestic Violence and Abuse as a major public health issue.

Tanya completed her PhD in 2004. Her thesis looked at the rise of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD) as a diagnostic category in children. In 1999, Tanya went to California to study cross-cultural perspectives of children’s mental health. During this period, she worked with different cultural groups in California, including working on several reservations with Native American children.

Tanya’s interest is in emotional and behavioural problems in both adults and children. She believes that many mental health conditions in adulthood have their origins in childhood, and that early parenting and family support interventions could make a significant contribution to the health and wellbeing of the individual and communities.

Tanya was recognised as Health Visitor of the year in 2013 for her contribution to the domestic violence agenda. She has been an advocate for many years for marginalised and hard to reach families. Tanya has published in the field of Domestic Violence and she delivers DV training.

As a Fellow of the Institute of Heath Visiting (iHV) and their DV expert and trainer, Tanya has contributed to the development of DV training for Health Visitors. She is an author of Good Practice Points for Health Visitors.

Gail Barker is a specialist community public health nurse who holds the role of Health Visitor Professional Lead within Devon Public Health Nursing and iHV Expert Adviser for Infant Feeding.

She became interested in the benefits of and barriers to breastfeeding many years ago when expecting her first child and nursing on an intensive care unit, where non-communicable challenges such as obesity, mental health and lifestyle factors can have such an impact on health outcomes. She quickly realised the influence that infant feeding can have on health, wellbeing, and building close and loving relationships for life.

As an NCT breastfeeding counsellor, she supported many parents and noted the inequity of accessible support as a challenge for parents. As a lactation consultant, she recognised not only the complexity of breastfeeding challenges, but also the simpleness of getting breastfeeding off to a good start – which can only happen when support, culture and societal expectations are all aligned. As a health visitor, it was apparent for some children that the gap in health inequalities would continue to grow, and the impact on physical, emotional and climate health for the child and family was significant and ever growing.

Breastfeeding has a significant part to play in reducing inequalities but this can only happen if services and professionals see this support as part of a wider system. Early feeding relationships and public health outcomes being a constant consideration when undertaking her MSc in Public Health, enabled Gail to accept that the playing field is neither flat, nor equal, nor fair for every child. It is what has inspired her to champion a public health approach in the support of breastfeeding and responsive infant feeding for every baby in every part of life, through ensuring that we as professionals hold it high on our agenda.

Gail is responsible for:

  • Supporting the Institute of Health Visiting to ensure a focus on Infant Feeding that supports responsive feeding which promotes public health outcomes for mother and child.
  • Providing a working knowledge of wider systems that can optimise wider system-supported breastfeeding.
  • Support and influence local and national policy to ensure that breastfeeding remains a key focus for mothers and babies within the United Kingdom.

As a NMC-registered academic community nurse and health visitor, my main research interest is in primary and community health care, especially research that seeks to improve the health and wellbeing of families and children in the community. I hold a strong belief in working in partnership with parents and families and understanding their needs to inform research and practice, most recently the experiences of women in Ukraine of perinatal mental health issues, Becoming Breast Feeding Friendly in the UK, and parenting using the TOPSE evaluation tool. I am currently working with the Children’s Policy Research Unit at UCL on several NIHR-funded studies related to the evaluation of the Family Nurse Partnership in England, the delivery of the Health Visiting Service and Adverse Childhood Experiences, and an NIHR-funded realist review of the delivery of health visiting services in the light of the COVID-19 pandemic in collaboration with Stirling and Oxford Universities. I am also the academic project manager for the Health Behaviour of School-Aged Children study for England in collaboration with the DHSC/DfE and the WHO. I am also a collaborator on a study funded in Australia to examine the impact of the nurse practitioner service on homeless children in South Australia.

As a nurse and health visitor, I have promoted the role of nursing in primary and community care throughout my career, and supervised and managed multiple practice-based studies that examine the nursing contribution to primary health care and public health, with reports on primary care being commissioned by the International Council of Nurses in Geneva. With my co-researchers I developed and validated the TOPSE tool for measuring parenting self-efficacy (www.topse.org) that is now widely used nationally and internationally. This has led to research with Aboriginal communities in Western Australia, where I am Adjunct Professor and the Sir Walter Murdoch outstanding International Scholar at Murdoch University.

As the lead for research capacity in the NIHR ARC for Kent, Surrey and Sussex, I also have a great interest in mentorship and supporting the healthcare workforce to develop their clinical and academic careers as a route to bringing transformation to healthcare delivery and outcomes for patients and families.

Sonia Tomescu – Training & Mental Health Administrator

Contact Sonia – [email protected]

Sally, a health visitor and researcher was one of the four founders of the Institute alongside Dr Cheryll Adams CBE, Professor Ros Bryar and Professor Dame Sarah Cowley. Sally a rare academic health visitor, moved into research thirty years ago, initially taking up an academic role, Chair and then working as Associate Dean at the University of Hertfordshire, and more recently at the University of Kent as Professor of Community Nursing and Public Health. Sally’s current research interests are focused on parenting and its impact on child health, both in the UK and internationally. Following her numerous contributions to the planning and launch of the Institute of Health Visiting, Sally joined the new Board as one of its first Trustees. She served on the board for eight years, actively contributing expertise from her extensive research career, and her particular interests in parenting and infant feeding and as a passionate health visitor.

Professor Helen Bedford is Professor of Child Health in the Population, Policy and Practice department of the Institute of Child Health at UCL and Great Ormond Street. Helen is an academic health visitor and one of the country’s leading experts on childhood vaccination and the determinants of vaccine uptake as well as on other child public health issues. Helen is also the chair of the national PCHR (red book) committee – this is a multi-disciplinary committee chaired by Helen and hosted by the Royal College of Paediatrics and Child Health. Helen has acted as the Institute’s advisor on immunisation and child health developments such as the e-red book. In particular, Helen has been the Institute’s rapid source of evidence-based advice when it is needed for press statements and new developments. With the retirement of Professor Sally Kendall from the iHV board in 2020, the Institute was delighted to welcome Helen into her place as a trustee in 2021 with a particular portfolio for research.

Katy Tuncer is an entrepreneur and leadership coach, who has had a distinguished career, initially in the army, then the Metropolitan police, before working as a consultant in the sports industry when her path first crossed with that of Cheryll Adams. Most recently, Katy has been working as an executive-level coach to system leaders whilst developing new tools to support them. Katy is also the mother of four young sons. The board unanimously agreed that Katy was a very worthy recipient of the Institute’s award of Honorary Fellowship. Katy remains connected with the work of the Institute, and we are currently exploring opportunities to revamp the Ready Steady Mums programme in 2022 when we hope that there will be more confidence for re-establishing new groups and re-launching those that were stopped during the pandemic – we are delighted that many Ready Steady Mums groups have carried on meeting throughout the last 20 months as walking and meeting with other parents in the fresh air have been so beneficial.

Sharin Baldwin PhD, MSc, PG Dip, BSc (Hons), HV, RM, RN, QN, FiHV, IHV Research & PIMH Champion
Clinical Academic Lead (Nursing), London North West University Healthcare Trust

Sharin is a trained nurse, midwife, health visitor with over 26 years of experience working in the NHS. Sharin qualified as a health visitor in 2002 and has experience working in a range of leadership, professional development and clinical academic roles throughout her career. Sharin works as Nursing Clinical Academic Lead at London North West Healthcare Trust. She is a Queen’s Nurse, Fellow of the Institute of Health Visiting (FiHV), iHV Perinatal Mental Health Champion and Health Visitor Research Champion.

Sharin completed her PhD at King’s College London in September 2020 as part of an NIHR Clinical Doctoral Fellowship and remains the only health visitor in the UK to be awarded this fellowship. As part of her PhD, Sharin has led and successfully completed the New Dad Study (NEST), resulting in numerous publications and national/international recognition. Sharin has experience in securing research grants, fellowships and awards. Following her PhD, Sharin completed a year in Warwick Clinical Trials Unit (part-time) after being awarded the NIHR Development and Skills Enhancement Award. Sharin currently holds an honorary position at Warwick Medical School as a Visiting Research Fellow.

Sharin is passionate about increasing research capability and capacity within health visiting. Sharin’s research interests are perinatal mental health, and fathers’ mental health in particular. Sharin has co-authored book chapters in health visiting textbooks and has a good track record of publications in national and international peer-reviewed journals https://www.researchgate.net/profile/Sharin-Baldwin. She is an editorial board member for the Journal of Health Visiting and peer reviewer for numerous professional bodies and journals, including NIHR, iHV, British Journal of Nursing, British Journal of Midwifery, BMC Pregnancy and Childbirth, International Journal of Nursing Studies, Primary Health Care Research and Development, and Journal of Midwifery.