Specialist healthcare services for children and young people with SEND

If you have any concerns about your child's health then you should make an appointment with your GP to discuss this further.

If you are referred to a specialist, there is often a diagnostic pathway (a process map) to guide you through the process.

There are a number of different specialist health teams working with children in Herefordshire and you can find more information about these teams below.

Children's Community Nursing Service

The Children's Community Nurses (CCN) provide nursing care to children from birth to 18 years old, who have an identified nursing need and are registered with a Herefordshire GP. This extends to the age of 19 years old for young people in specialist educational settings.

Care is provided to enable children and young peoples' acute and complex health needs to be managed in their own homes, schools and respite centres.

The service may also include providing families with specialist equipment, guidance and education in medical and nursing procedures and signposting families to other services.

The team provides support around transitional care into adult health services.

Find out more about the Children's Community Nursing Service.

Children's Hearing Centre

The Children's Hearing Centre is a multi-disciplinary team consisting of senior audiologists, clinical scientists, audiology assistants, school hearing screeners and administrative support.

They provide a family friendly service for all children from birth to 16 years of age.

They work with families to provide an accessible service and provide early identification, assessment and treatment for children of all ages and abilities.

The Children's Hearing Centre work closely with colleagues in the Newborn Hearing Screening Programme, Ear Nose and Throat (ENT) Department, Paediatricians, Adult Audiology Team and the Education Support Service for hearing impaired children (ToHI).

Find out more about the Children's Hearing Service.

Children's Occupational Therapy

Occupational Therapy is a healthcare profession that supports people with their day to day life. This includes everything they need, have and want to do. For example, for children this may be washing, dressing, tying shoe laces or doing up buttons.

Occupational Therapists will evaluate the person, environment and the occupation (activity), to find ways to help make day to day tasks easier. This could be achieved through a variety of interventions including improving hand skills, gross motor skills, providing strategies and advice or prescribing specialist equipment.

Find out more about Children's Occupational Therapy.

Children's Physiotherapy

Children's Physiotherapy is a specialist community physiotherapy service for babies, children and young people living in Herefordshire.

Children's Physiotherapists have additional knowledge and experience of child development and childhood disabilities.

Children's Physiotherapists are responsible for the assessment and physical rehabilitation of children and young people who are identified as having difficulties with the development of gross motor skills and mobility as a result of accident, injury, disease or disability.

They also see children with specific conditions such as Cystic Fibrosis, Juvenile Idiopathic Arthritis, Chronic Fatigue Syndrome, gait anomalies and life-limiting conditions.

Children's Physiotherapists use a variety of tools to assess a child's physical needs and their level of functioning. Physiotherapy treatment plans are created in discussion with parents, carers and children.

Find out more about Children's Physiotherapy.

Community Paediatrician

The Community Paediatricians are a small, specialised team providing a consultant-led service dedicated to improving the health and wellbeing of children, young people and their families.

They deliver a high-quality service to families with children suffering from developmental disorders and disabilities, children in need of protection and children in care. They also support children with life-limiting conditions within the family.

You may be seen in the Child Development Centre, a community hospital, children's centre or special school. The doctors will see you in the most appropriate place depending upon your address and your child's condition. Home visits are available in special circumstances.

To access the service, you need a referral from your GP, health visitor, school nurse or social worker.

Find out more about the Community Paediatricians.


The Dietetic Department provides services to patients in the County Hospital and community hospitals. Including advice and support for inpatients in hospital, outpatient clinics at the hospital including specialist children's clinics and support for patients on artificial feeding at home.

Find out more about the Dietetics Department.

Epilepsy Specialist Nurse

The role of the Children's Epilepsy Specialist Nurse is to support children, young people, and their families and carers, who have a confirmed diagnosis of epilepsy.

The Children's Epilepsy Specialist Nurse works across primary and secondary care, and in partnership with the person with epilepsy, their families and health and social care professionals to offer specialist clinical support, and provide relevant information and education.

The local epilepsy nurses also support all our young adults with transition to adult services with twice yearly specialist transition clinics.

You can email the Children's Epilepsy Nurses at ChildrensEpilepsyHerefordshire@wvt.nhs

Speech and Language Therapy

Speech and Language Therapists and assistants work with children and adults across the county.

Speech and Language Therapy provides life-improving treatment, tailored support and care for people of all ages who have difficulties with communication, eating, drinking or swallowing.

The team work together with children, adults, families, carers and the wider workforce to carry out assessments and plan personalised therapy programmes which meet each individual's needs.

Speech and Language Therapy offers a self-referral service so referrals can be made to the service by parents and carers for children with feeding and/or speech, language and communication difficulties who meet the referral criteria. View the criteria and complete a referral form.

Find out more about the Speech and Language Therapy Service.

Paediatric Bladder and Bowel Service

The Paediatric Bladder and Bowel Service can see children from the age of four years and above.

The service aims to actively promote bladder and bowel health and continence.

The service will assess children and young people to give advice and best management for their continence difficulties.

The service will support with day time wetting, nocturnal enuresis, constipation and soiling for children and young people.

Referrals to the service can be made by multi-disciplinary professionals including healthcare, education, portage and social care.

The service can also provide teaching to health care professionals and schools.

Find out more about the Bladder and Bowel Health Service.