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Survey shows 60% of health visiting teams affected by Covid-19 redeployment

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The redeployment of health visitors to support the national coronavirus response has left remaining staff with increased workloads, worsened mental health and fears that the needs of children are being missed, a new survey has revealed.

In the wake of Covid-19, University College London (UCL) gathered the views of 663 health visitors in England to find out how the pandemic had affected their work. Overall, 60% of respondents reported that at least one member of their team had been redeployed between 19 March and 3 June. Of teams that had lost staff, 41% reported that between six and 50 colleagues had been moved elsewhere during that period.

The combination of increased caseloads and limited face-to-face contacts left “widespread concern” among health visitors that the needs of many children would be missed in the peak of the outbreak, found the survey. Study authors raised concerns about the “significant negative impacts” that increased workload and pressures had on staff wellbeing and mental health.

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