It is now easier for the effect of brain injuries among children to be monitored throughout their childhood thanks to a revised version of the Personal Child Health Record (PCHR).
Parents are given the PCHR, or the ‘red book’ as it’s also known, when their child is born. The PCHR is then used to record their child’s health, growth and development and should be updated whenever the child is seen by any health professional.
The latest version of the PCHR now includes a section for accident reporting, a change that has been welcomed by the UK Acquired Brain Injury Forum (UKABIF) as it will allow more careful long-term monitoring of a child’s health. As brain injury specialist and chair of UKABIF, Professor Michael Barnes said, “There is a general lack of understanding about the effects of brain injury in children and a lack of awareness that over time it is a developing disability and requires monitoring long-term to identify problems arising post-injury”.
Each year, 1.4 million people are admitted to A&E departments with a head injury according to research conducted by NICE, the National Institute for Health Care Excellence. Of these 1.4 million people, up to 50% of them are children under the age of 15.
The UKABIF stress that although some children may “look medically fine” when recovering from a brain injury (i.e. they can walk, talk, eat and sleep okay), new longer-term effects of the brain injury can emerge over time.
Children with brain injuries can develop behavioural problems or impairments to motor function as they get older, so the new accident reporting and injury monitoring sections of the Personal Child Health Record are welcome additions as parents and health professionals can now more closely monitor any long-term effects an acquired brain injury has on their child’s health.
Also see: Brain Injury Compensation Explained.
Slater and Gordon Lawyers are a leading personal injury law firm with more than 1,450 staff and 18 offices in London, Manchester, Liverpool, Sheffield, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Cardiff, Milton Keynes, Merseyside, Bristol, Newcastle, Halifax, Wakefield, Derby, Cambridge and meeting rooms in Bramhall, Cheshire and in Hull, Yorkshire.