4.7 Pre-Birth Conference
Last updated 14/07/2021
A Pre-birth Child Protection Conference should have the same status and process as any other Initial Conference and can, where appropriate, make a recommendation that the child becomes subject to a child protection plan at birth.
The social work report to the ICPC must include the pre birth assessment, undertaken in partnership with maternity services.
Midwifery and Health Visiting services should both be included in all conferences where an unborn child is considered and in any pre-birth planning. The health visitor should ensure that the appropriate GP is made aware of any identified risks and of any plans made.
Future risk of significant harm in relation to the unborn child of an adult living within the same household as a child subject to a child protection plan should be considered at a Child Protection Review Conference prior to the birth.
Pre-birth Child Protection Conferences or Review Conferences where an unborn child is to be considered, should be held no later than the 34th week of the pregnancy and ideally as soon as possible after the pregnancy ‘booking in appointment.’ This ensures an assessment of undertaken and a plan in place aiming for the parent to be able to meet the child’s needs at birth, or have a clear alternative permanency plan for the new-born baby.
If concerns centre around the category of parenting behaviour involving substance misuse either historical or current, the key worker must consider the invitation of relevant substance misuse / alcohol misuse and adult mental health services, in order to offer advice and support during the pregnancy and to assess risk to the unborn child.