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Child Home Injury Prevention (CHIP) Scheme
What is the CHIP scheme?
The CHIP scheme aims to help Lincolnshire families keep their children safe from home accidents. Accidents in and around the home are a leading cause of preventable death and disability for children under 5 years old.
How does the CHIP scheme work?
Home safety interventions that include a combination of home safety assessment, parent education and provision and fitting of safety equipment can be effective in preventing child accidents in the home.
The CHIP scheme provides a range of resources to staff and volunteers working with families so they can support families with accident prevention. There's also an equipment fitting service that families can be referred to if they need safety equipment.
The National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE) recommend that homes with children under 5 have a 'structured home safety assessment' to identify and address any child injury risks in the home.
The purpose of the CHIP assessment is help practitioners:
- take a systematic approach to identifying child injury risk in the home
- give consistent safety advice according to the latest evidence, and
- keep a record of identified risks and the action taken to mitigate them.
The assessment looks at risks associated with developmental milestones as there's a strong link between the types of accidents children are involved in and their stage of development.
It also takes a Sign of Safety approach, encouraging families to think about what's working well and what actions can be taken to make their children safer.
The CHIP assessment can be downloaded at the bottom of the page. It comes with a guide containing all the safety messages relating to each question on the assessment.
You can complete the assessment online and on submission a copy will be sent to your email address. It's also available on Mosaic so it can be added to a child/family's record. PLEASE NOTE - completing the CHIP assessment does not mean a referral will be made, to make a referral for equipment, practitioners need to read the CHIP visit section and use the CHIP Visit referral form.
Parent education plays an important role in preventing child accidents in the home. Staff and volunteers working with families are in a great position to educate parents and carers about child injuries and how they can be prevented.
The CHIP e-learning module is a must-do for anyone who works with children under 5 years of age or supports families with children under 5. It takes around 20 minutes and by the end practitioners will be able to:
- Identify what causes the most common and serious injuries in the under 5s and what can be done to prevent them
- Explain the link between child development and injuries
- Find useful resources to help you prevent accidents.
Here's how to access the course:
- Go to: https://safeguardinglincolnshire.vc-enable.co.uk. Instructions of how to register are attached.
- Click 'Learning'
- Click 'Available learning'
- Type 'Chip' into search bar. 'Child Home Injury Prevention (CHIP) E-Learning' will appear
- Click 'Start' and then click 'Start' again
- Click 'Download' and then open the PowerPoint
- Click 'Slide Show' once in the document and click through it using the mouse or spacebar
- Once finished, click 'Next' in the e-learning site and it'll take you to a quiz. Complete the quiz to gain a certificate.
Click here to refer. Please read the information below before referring.
CHIP Visits are provided by Lincolnshire Fire and Rescue (LFR). Upon referral, LFR will visit the household and supply/fit safety equipment as necessary. This may include:
- Safety gates (to prevent access to and falls on stairs)
- Window restrictors (to prevent falls from windows)
- Fire guards (to prevent access to open fires)
- Cupboard locks (to prevent access to cupboards containing medicines and poisonous household chemicals)
- Blind cord cleats (to prevent access to blind cords which could cause entanglement and suffocation)
- Hair-straightener pouches (to prevent burns from hot hair straighteners)
They will also undertake a home fire safety check which includes escape planning with the family and installation of smoke or CO alarms, if needed.
Referrals for CHIP Visits can only be made by Early Help Workers, Early Years Practitioners, Health Visitors, Family Health Workers and Social Workers.
The referral form will ask for a copy of the household's CHIP Assessment. This demonstrates the need for equipment and evidences that home safety has been discussed with the family.
It’s important to note that LFR's responsibility is to assess for and fit safety equipment according to manufacturer's instructions and best practice. It is not LFR's responsibility to educate parents about accident prevention – this is the responsibility of the referring practitioner. Evidence shows that the provision and installation of safety equipment is only successful in preventing injuries when combined with parent education. The CHIP e-learning and assessment tool are designed to support practitioners with this.
CHIP Visits are targeted at households where children are at greatest risk of injury. The following characteristics indicate that a child may be at high risk:
- They live in areas of deprivation
- They live in rented accommodation, poor quality housing or homes of multiple occupancy
- Their parents are unemployed or have never worked
- Their parent’s ability to supervise is impaired (i.e. due to mental health problems, health/care needs, substance misuse, number of children in property)
- They have young or single parents with poor support networks
- Their parents can’t afford safety equipment.
The following eligibility criteria is therefore applied. The child/family must be on:
- Child protection plan
- Child in Need assessment/plan
- Early Support Care Co-ordination (ESCO)
- Team Around the Child (TAC) plan
- Income Based Jobseekers Allowance; Income Related Employment Support Allowance; Income Support. Also including Universal Credit
- Working Tax Credits or Child Tax Credits
- Disability Living Allowance or Personal Independence Payments
- Housing Benefit or Council Tax Benefit
Some points to consider before referring:
- Ensure you have consent of the parent/carer
- If the parent/carer is a tenant they will need to have permission from their landlord
- Be aware that LFR will not install safety gates unless there is a child aged less than 24 months in the property
- You will be notified with details of action taken during the visit. Please retain this in the child/family record.
Child Milestone Cards. Lincolnshire County Council has produced 6 child milestone cards for families to remember and celebrate their child's first developmental milestones (see Downloads). On the back of each card is advice on how to keep children safe from accidents as they grow and learn new skills. They can be used for displays and campaigns or as teaching resources in one-to-one or group sessions on child safety. When professionally printed they make a great gift for families.
Public Health England's Preventing Unintentional Injuries Guide is for all staff working with children under 5 years and covers data, actions for practitioners and safety messages for parents and carers.
The Keeping Children Safe at Home research programme, led by University of Nottingham, has produced an Injury Prevention Briefing with ideas for activities, education and training for practitioners working with children and families.
The Lullaby Trust has excellent, easy-read safe sleep resources.
The Royal Society for the Prevention of Accidents (RoSPA) Parent Hub has advice for parents on keeping their under 5s safe.
The Child Accident Prevention Trust (CAPT) is the UK’s leading charity working to reduce the number of children and young people killed, disabled or seriously injured in accidents.
Below in the downloads is a safety messages card game and answer sheet. This is a good game to play with parents and teaches about potential risks and how to reduce or eliminate them. Print off the sheet, cut into cards, shuffle and get people to match the hazard with the correct safety advice.
Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org.
Who to contact
Contact NameSam CrowContact PositionProgramme Officer, Public HealthTelephone01522 552275Eemail@example.com