Family Nurse Partnership
Early Intervention and the Family Nurse Partnership Programme in Fife
The NHS Fife Family Nurse Partnership (FNP) Programme is an evidenced based behaviour change programme designed to support first-time young parents. It is a nurse-delivered, intensive, home-based service aimed at
- Improving pregnancy outcomes;
- Improving child health and development and future school readiness and achievement; and
- Improving parents’ self-sufficiency.
The programme is delivered by a team of specially trained Family Nurses and one Family Nurse Supervisor and is based on a therapeutic relationship between the nurse and the client. The team are also supported by a Data Manager/Administrator. Visits are structured, though flexible also and cover topics including: -
- personal health
- environmental health
- life course development
- maternal role
- family and friends
The service is offered to all first time mums aged 19 and under who plan to keep their baby, and are resident within NHS Fife boundaries. Clients are enrolled ideally before 17 weeks gestation but can still be offered the programme until they are 28+6 weeks.
Once enrolled the client continues to receive the standard midwifery care alongside the Family Nurse Programme. FNP is a voluntary programme and the client can choose to leave at any point. The Family Nurse will offer visits on a fortnightly basis. The Family Nurse will complete all child health development assessments normally done by the Health Visitor . When the clients baby reaches age 2, care is transferred to a Health Visitor in the client's GP Practice. FNP is a Fife wide service and as such the client will work with the same Family Nurse over the course of the programme, namely 2.5 years.
Family Nurses use a wide-range of materials that support learning, personal reflection and behaviour change. There is a strong focus on the health and well-being of the child, as well as the mother as the primary care giver. The programme also includes other family members where possible and actively engages and supports fathers. The programme is delivered under licence and monthly reports are shared with the National Unit to demonstrate that the licence is not breached.
The Family Nurse Partnership Programme, based on the theories of human ecology, attachment and self-efficacy, originates from ovre 35 years of development and three large research trials by Professor David Olds and his team at the University of Colorado USA.
Consistent results have demonstrated:
- Improvements in women’s antenatal health
- Reductions in children’s injuries
- Fewer subsequent pregnancies
- Greater intervals between births
- Increases in fathers’ involvement
- Increases in employment
- Reductions in welfare dependency
- Reduced substance use initiation and later problems
- Improvements in school readiness.
As FNP expands across Scotland education and training support for the Family Nurses and Supervisor is now provided by the Scottish National Unit for FNP who are based within NHS Education for Scotland. Early indications from the first cohort of clients who have completed FNP in Fife would suggest that there are already positive outcomes for both mum and child.