Learning with children, young people and adults about how we can keep them safe.
Healthcare decision-making involving children and young people can be a difficult process, especially in situations of serious illness. When children are ill, adults have an understandable desire to protect them from difficult decisions and to shield them from unpleasant information. Yet, children and young people want and need to be heard by healthcare professionals and to be provided with age-appropriate explanations and information in order to help them cope with the consultation and treatment processes. There is a need for better training for professionals in dealing with both children and parents and more research is needed into how participation works in practice and into the impact of factors such as social exclusion or other forms of disadvantage on participation.
This Not Just a Thought project has been co-produced and co-designed with children, young people and young adults from the outset.
The resources produced in the project will, we hope, make it easier for professionals to have discussions with children, young people and young adults about things that may be troubling them or may be troubling the professionals. Equally we hope that the resources and the transparent way
in which they are being released to the public, will give confidence to children, young people and young adults that their views will be listened to in professional interactions, and will give confidence to them to be able to speak-up about things that may be troubling them.
Over time, with dissemination of these resources and incorporation into a normal professional routine we hope that it might be possible for children, young people and young adults to declare at an earlier stage situations they are worried about. Equally we hope that these resources may, in the future, help professionals to have better interactions with children, young people and young adults so that their chances of picking up, much earlier, people who are at risk of significant harm or who have suffered significant harm, will be higher.