Posted on Thursday 21 February 2013
Health Minister Dr Dan Poulter recently launched a national pledge at Evelina Children’s Hospital.
The pledge aims to make improvements to the health of children and young people. The Evelina was chosen as the hospital to launch the pledge as it has excellent standards of care and is a ‘model example’ for other hospitals in the country to follow.
At the event Dr Dan Poulter, who trained at Guy’s and St Thomas’, said: “It is a shocking fact that child mortality in Britain is the worst when compared to other similar European countries. There is unacceptable variation across the country in the quality of care for children – for example in the treatment of long-term conditions such as asthma and diabetes.
“We are determined that children and young people will be at the heart of the new health and care system. Too often in the past their needs have been an afterthought.
“Our pledge demonstrates how all parts of the system will play their part and work together to improve children’s health. There is already a lot of good work going on but we want the NHS to do even more to improve care for children and young people and reduce the mortality rate.”
Dr Dan Poulter was given a tour of the intensive care unit at the Evelina, and also spent time with young patients with long term health conditions who are going through the process of transitioning from the children’s hospital to adult services at Guy’s and St Thomas’.
This group of patients are an important focus of the pledge which aims to create a safe and seamless bridge from adolescent services to new adult services to enable them to continue to manage their conditions successfully. These patients, who are supported by specialist transition nurses at the Evelina, shared their views with Dr Poulter on their experiences of the NHS.
Read more about the Department of Health’s pledge.