Local Offer - Specialist health services

Specialist health services provide expert advice for children and young people with extra needs.

Parents and carers sometimes experience difficulties accessing health services when they live on the borders of Solihull and Birmingham.

Working together with health partners across Birmingham and Solihull and parent carers, this set of cross border principles have been developed.

How to make a referral

Our summary table tells you how to make a referral to specialist health services.

The Children's Community Nursing team support children and families with complex and palliative health care needs. The team consists of Registered Children Children’s Nurses who have a range of nursing experience from different specialities. They support and empower parents/carers to look after their child at home, support access to different environments e.g. nurseries and schools, promote early discharge from hospital and reduce hospital admissions.

All children who are educated in one of Solihull Solihull’s special schools should have the contact details of the special school nurse for their school and the Community Children Children’s Nursing office contact details for out of term time support. If a family are unsure they can also contact the nurses via each school reception.

The special school nurse is available to provide advice and support in relation to health and public health for children, support with medical needs within the school setting including care plans for teachers/ staff, training for staff and ‘hands on on’ care for medication, feed or complex care delivery. They will also support with continence and safeguarding advice. The special school nurse should be the first point of contact for all parents with a query in relation to their child child’s health and well being.

The Learning Disability Nursing team provide advice and support to families of children with moderate to severe learning disability on the implementation of strategies to enable your child to reach their full potential in the following areas:

  • toilet training
  • sleep programmes
  • behaviour management
  • fussy eating
  • puberty
  • personal relationships.

Each child that enters care of the local authority has their first health assessment completed by a paediatrician with specialist knowledge of children and young people.

A nurse is then allocated to each CYPLA who will follow up on their health needs and offer holistic health assessments, in accordance with statutory guidance, as home visits within 50 miles of Solihull. If a child is placed over 50 miles the team will ask a team local to the child, to complete the health assessment on their behalf.

The nursing team, based in Shirley, Solihull operate a Monday to Friday 8.00am until 6.30pm service .During these hours we offer open access for CYPLA, carers or professionals to speak with the allocated nurse for a child/young person.

You can email the team or call 0121 295 3010

Paediatric Physiotherapists treat children and young people who have physical conditions which affect normal childhood development. They use techniques which contribute towards the overall development of children in order that they can become as independent as possible in childhood and onwards to adulthood.

Paediatric Speech and Language Therapists (SLT) provide assessment advice and treatment to people who have communication impairment and/or a feeding and swallowing difficulty. This includes difficulties with speech and language, voice, fluency and social communication.

SLTs adopt a patient centred approach respecting the individual individual’s needs and opinions. Their aim is to work with the
child, family and other professionals in order for the child to develop independent, functional communication.

Occupational Therapists (OTs) are interested in how young people manage the everyday activities that keep them busy (‘occupy’ them) at home, at school and during their leisure time. Their aim is to identify the activities your child wants or needs to do and to find ways to make these activities easier for the young person, their family, teachers and others involved with the child.

Information on assessments for children with sensory needs in Solihull can be found here.

The Paediatric Audiology Service team assess and manage the hearing needs of children and young people aged 0-18 years. They provide clinics at Heartlands Hospital, Good Hope Hospital, Solihull Hospital and some community locations in Solihull.

Community Paediatricians are Doctors who specialise in developmental, behavioural and social difficulties of children relating to specific conditions.

The links below provide information on the nurse led ADHD referral pathway and supplementary information.


The SAS works with children who have either complex medical and developmental needs or with children and young people where their difficulties may indicate an Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). For children with complex medical needs they may also provide coordinated therapeutic work to meet a child’s needs.

The Specialist Assessment Service developed an assessment model to consider the possibility that a child/young person may have PDA. This has been published and is freely accessible.

You can find further information at the University Hospitals Birmingham website.

Motability have launched a scheme to provide specialist vehicles to children in the UK under the age of three who must always be accompanied by bulky medical equipment and/or need to be near a motor vehicle in case they require treatment for their condition.

All families of children who meet these criteria are eligible, the route for them to apply is through the Family Fund grant scheme. The application process is open now.

Some children with physical difficulties require specialist equipment in order to support them to access their everyday activities. Many of the children we see for this have been referred to us by the Specialist Assessment Service

We work closely with colleagues in the Specialist Inclusion Support Service physical impairment team to support young people with physical disabilities in mainstream schools, recommending adaptations and adjustments to ensure young people are able to safely access their school environments.

As part of our role, we might also recommend specialist seating for school and/or home to make it easier for the young person to participate in their everyday activities, such as to write and draw, play, interact with friends and eat or drink. Note that we do not have funding to provide specialist seating, but will provide a letter to schools/social services explaining the cost and benefits of the chair for the individual. Once equipment has been provided, the occupational therapist will ensure this is set up for the young person and will provide training/support to ensure it is used safely

School nurses within mainstream schools in Solihull no longer provide assessment and referral of children for continence supplies.

School nurses are commissioned by Solihull Council to deliver the Healthy Child Programme and are able to offer basic advice and support on nocturnal enuresis (Bedwetting), constipation and toilet training problems. Other health professionals to whom a child may be known, eg community children’s nursing team, do still assess and refer for continence supplies where appropriate.

The Continence service at Grove Road Clinic (Telephone: 0121 704 2381) is unable to assess a child for continence supplies but they are able to provide supplies to eligible children on receipt of a referral from a GP or any other health professional who is qualified to see a child. Any child with a special needs diagnosis will qualify to receive continence supplies.

Further information and advice can be found at:

All young people and adults from the age of 14 years with a learning disability (LD) should have a health check every year by their GP.

It is essential to ensure that the GP has all the children and young people’s names on their LD register so that families can be called for appointments for the annual LD health check. Unless a young person’s learning disability status is registered on the GP systems then reasonable adjustments to care for that individual cannot be anticipated and made.

Regular health checks can detect treatable illnesses and help prevent more serious ones, as well as familiarising the young person with the GP practice, which they may use throughout their adult life.

Find out more about annual health checks.

In Solihull if your child is known the Community Learning Disability Nursing Team you may receive this letter from your nursing service.

A continuing care package will be required when a child or young person has needs arising from disability, accident or illness that cannot be met by existing universal or special services alone.

Some children and young people (up to 18-years-old), may have very complex health needs. These may be the result of congenital conditions, long-term or life-limiting or life-threatening conditions, disability, or the after-effects of serious illness or injury.

These needs may be so complex, that they cannot be met by the services which are routinely available from GP practices, hospitals or in the community commissioned by Integrated Care Systems or NHS England. A package of additional health support may be needed. This additional package of care is known as continuing care.

Continuing care is not needed by children or young people whose needs can be met appropriately through existing universal or specialist services through a directly contracted case management approach.

The NHS Birmingham and Solihull is responsible for leading the process of identifying if a child or young person is eligible for continuing care assessment.

NHS Birmingham and Solihull have produced an information leaflet for parent and carers. If you require further information you can contact the contact the Children and Young People’s continuing care team at on 0121 203 3222.

Transition to Adult Care provision

Continuing care for children and young people stops when a child/ young person reaches 18. For people over the age of 18 with severe and complex health needs, support may be provided through NHS continuing healthcare for adults. This is organised differently from continuing care for children and young people, and there is a different assessment process.

If your child/ young person receives continuing care and it seems likely they will need similar support when they are an adult this should be identified in discussion with you when they reach age 14 years. At 17 years your young person should be referred for initial assessment for adult NHS continuing healthcare. This should again be a multi-disciplinary assessment and a decision about eligibility should be made when they are 17 years old.

If your child has a specific health need (such as Diabetes, Asthma, Epilepsy, Severe allergy etc) they may need a health care plan to advise the school staff on how to manage their condition. Every child’s need is usually specific to them so all care plans should be individualised for the child.

This is usually separate to an Education Health Care Plan as it looks at the health need and any specific actions or precautions the school should take into account in relation to that health condition when your child is in their care.

If your child is in a Solihull mainstream school or is about to start school into a Solihull mainstream school setting and you think your child needs a health care plan you can contact your school nurse through the school or via their website and ask for advice a support.

If your child is in a Solihull special school or is about to start into a Solihull special school setting and you think your child needs a health care plan you can contact your school nurse through the school or via their website and ask for advice and support.

It is important that a health care plan is clear, specific and detailed therefore your school nurse may ask to meet with you and your child and/or your permission to contact any specialist nurses, your child’s Gp or your child’s Consultant to ensure the information that is shared in the plan is accurate and up to date. You should receive a copy of this care plan for your own records.

It is expected that any health care plan is reviewed annually as a minimum but if anything changes with your child’s health condition it is important that you share this with the school nurse who may update the health care plan earlier. This is really important to ensure your child’s needs are still being appropriately met.

If your child has a regular medication that needs to be given in school this may not need a health care plan but will require a consent form completing - please ask your child’s school directly about their medicines in school policy and procedure.

The following NHS England Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Quick Guides are available regarding:

  • Guidance for health services for children and young people with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)
  • Commissioning for transition to adult services for young people with Special Educational Needs and Disability (SEND)