8 March 2019
The Health and Social Committee’s new report, First 1000 days of Life, discusses the profound impact that experiences in this period can have on children’s health and life chances.
The reports follows an extensive inquiry into UK families’ experiences of the first 1000 days, and highlights the need to both improve service provision to better empower parents, and to combat the many social stresses that families face.
In-keeping with our Call to Action campaign, the committee calls for a coordinated, Government-led response to improving child health in their period: “The Government should lead by developing a long-term, cross-Government strategy for the first 1000 days of life, setting demanding goals to reduce adverse childhood experiences, improve school readiness and reduce infant mortality and child poverty.”
The Committee recommends that service improvements follow six principles:
- “proportionate universalism”, so services are available to all but targeted in proportion to the level of need,
- prevention and early intervention,
- community partnerships,
- a focus on meeting the needs of marginalised groups,
- greater integration and better multi-agency working; and
- evidence-based provision.