Online Learning Helps Those Supporting Children with Healthcare Needs
Two eLearning modules, produced by the digital learning and assessment specialist, eCom Scotland, are helping those whose job is to support children with exceptional healthcare needs.
The Children with Exceptional Healthcare Needs (CEN) Network - part of the National Network Management Service, a division within NHS National Services Scotland (NSS) - needed to develop these two, updated modules for practitioners and students working in the health, local authority and the voluntary sectors who work with children and young people who have exceptional healthcare needs.
The learning resources, entitled ‘Communication-NSS’ and ‘Coordination-NSS’ aim to strengthen the specialist services for children in Scotland with complex and exceptional healthcare needs.
Accountable to the Scottish Government, NSS - a Non-Departmental Public Body which works at the heart of the health service, providing national strategic support services and expert advice to NHS Scotland - carried out a competitive tender process and eCom won the tender to produce these learning materials.
“Ensuring they met all of the CEN Network requirements, along with ensuring compliance with the current accessibility legislation for eLearning content, the modules have been designed to have an intuitive user interface - to instil confidence in using the modules to learners with widely varying levels of IT skills,” said Wendy Edie, eCom’s Managing Director. “We also identified where opportunities for reflection and knowledge checks could be included throughout the materials, as well as producing a downloadable journal for users to add reflections and answers – to help confirm that learners have gained the required knowledge, skills and attitudes needed when caring for children, young people and their families.”
The Communication-NSS module focuses on conveying the importance of children and young people’s right to communication, how to ensure their voices are heard and that their views are respected in all decisions involving them.
The module highlights the challenges of communication with non-verbal speakers and aims to increase awareness in the use of Additional and Augmentative communication resources to enable communication. It also covers the unique aspects of caring for children and young people with communication barriers.
The Coordination-NSS module stresses the importance of delivering a streamlined and co-ordinated response from practitioners in care planning and delivery across all ages and through Transitions (health, education and social care). The module, which helps practitioners to understand and be actively involved in the provision of co-ordinated care, shows the value of the child’s views being taken into account whenever consent is sought in relation to healthcare through assessing the child’s developmental capacity - in accordance with UN Convention on the Rights of the Child (UNCRC) guidance.
“The CEN Network wanted the modules to encourage learners to reflect on their personal attitudes, beliefs and work practices,” explained Wendy Edie. “In addition, it wanted the modules to get learners to reflect on how they interact with children and young people who have communication issues, along with their families – especially those children who’re in need of greater coordinated care.
“We understand that the CEN believes that the modules are engaging and motivating their intended audience to continue to develop their knowledge, skills and attitudes in this field to ensure they deliver appropriate care,” Wendy added.
“Learners can work through the modules’ content with a supervisor, a group of peer learners or solo at a time that’s most suitable for them. This flexibility ensures that training can be easily fitted around existing work commitments – and is delivered in a cost-effective way, providing value-for-money for all stakeholders, including the children’s support staff, the children, their families, NHS Scotland and the taxpayer.”
This is one of many projects that eCom has carried out successfully for NHS Scotland. For further details of this project, visit https://www.ecomscotland.com/case-studies/nss-children-with-expectational-healthcare-needs/