- 6 updates
Hospitals across England are to take part in a new scheme aimed at helping to rescue vulnerable children from abuse and neglect.
A national database is being set up to record each time a child visits Accident and Emergency, or has an out-of-hours consultation with a GP.
ITV News correspondent Sue Saville reports on the new plans:
Lisa Harker, head of strategy at the NSPCC has welcomed the announcements of plans to log children's visits to A&E on a national database, but has said that it is "down to the quality and the skills" of the professionals involved.
Lisa Harker, head of strategy at the NSPCC, welcomed the announcement of plans to log children's visits to A&E on a national database.
She said: "NHS doctors and nurses are often in the frontline of child protection and play a crucial role in identifying abuse victims as quickly as possible.
"So this new system for sharing information about children at risk should prove an important aid."
Under the Government's new plans, a flag will appear on a child's medical record if they are subject to a child protection plan or are being looked after by the local authority
According to the Department of Health, doctors and nurses will be able to use this information as part of their overall clinical assessment, along with information about where and when children have previously been receiving urgent treatment.
This will help them build up a better picture of what is happening in the child's life so they can alert social services if they think something might be wrong.
The health minister Dr Dan Poulter has defended new measures that will see all children who visit accident and emergency (A&E) departments logged in a database. He said:
All children who visit accident and emergency (A&E) departments or have out-of-hours GP consultations will be logged in a national database, health minister Dr Dan Poulter has said.
The system is designed to help doctors and nurses spot children who are suffering from abuse or neglect and avoid cases like that of Baby P, he said.
Doctors and nurses will be able to see if the children they treat are subject to a child protection plan or are being looked after, and whether they have been a frequent visitor to A&E.