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Arrangements to secure children’s and adult safeguarding in the future NHS

The new accountability and assurance framework – interim advice

The NHS is currently in the process of implementing a major programme of reform following the passage of the Health and Social Care Act 2012. This is designed to support the creation of a health service that is clinically led, patient centred, dedicated to the delivery of world-class outcomes and focussed on improving the health of the population.

It is essential that there is clarity about responsibilities in relation to safeguarding within these new arrangements – and about how the new system can help drive continued improvement in practice and outcomes.

In the final report (May 2011) of her review of child protection, Professor Eileen Munro expressed concern about the possible impact of the health reforms on effective partnership arrangements and the ability to provide effective help for children suffering, or likely to suffer, significant harm. In response, the Government committed to establishing a co-produced work programme “to ensure continued improvement and the development of effective arrangements to safeguard and promote children’swelfare as central considerations of the health reforms”.

The Government is also committed to working to prevent and reduce the risk of abuse and neglect of adults.