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Child Protection Nurse Specialist 3

Clinical Practice
Career Pathway

Career Directions

  • Public Health
  • Education
  • Policy/Strategy Development

Area of Practice

  • Public Health Nursing


  • Community/Primary Care

Job/Role Summary

  • To provide child protection supervision to individuals and groups of nursing staff
  • To provide pre- and post-case conference supervision for individual staff
  • Attendance at case conferences to provide support & guidance to nursing and midwifery staff and participate in risk assessment
  • To participate in and promote effective multi-disciplinary working
  • To participate in Case Management Reviews as required by the Trust
  • To identify staff learning and development needs and facilitate a rolling programme of child protection training to address training needs


Specific qualifications and experience required

  • Hold RGN/RHV Qualification and be currently registered on parts 1 & 3 of the NMC Live Register
  • Minimum of 3 years recent Health Visiting experience at Grade G or above within the past 5 years (excluding courses).
  • Experience of working with child protection issues on a multi-disciplinary/partnership basis.
  • Experience of multi-agency assessment.
  • Experience of working with complex family situations.
  • Working knowledge of current child protection/children in need/looked after children/adoption frameworks/policies
  • Ability to work well across organisational boundaries
  • Ability to analyse issues and think critically


Career Milestones

The posts I occupied as a staff nurse in a medical ward, Health Visitor and Lecturer Practitioner in Health Visiting all contributed to my personal and professional development in significant but differing ways. I obtained my Registered Nurse qualification when I completed a degree in nursing which was an excellent foundation for both my clinical practice and for further studies. I then worked for five years as a staff nurse in a medical ward and this consolidated communication, clinical, leadership, organisational and management skills. This time also reinforced my wish to work in a preventative public health role so that I was ready when an opportunity arose to apply for a secondment training post for health visiting. I spent five years in a health visiting post which developed my understanding of inequalities in health, wider societal issues impinging on children, families and communities' health & well-being. During this time I was involved in teaching students on specialist practice courses and it was a natural progression to move to a lecturer practitioner post where I had the opportunity to work with groups of students. I gained experience in a range of teaching and learning strategies, information and communication technology, research, quality assurance in higher education, educational audit and curriculum development. The Trust component of the post has presented a range of opportunities to develop skills through practice development and through working with external agencies such as NIPEC.


What attracted you to this job?

  • A growing interest in the area of child welfare and protection and a chance to contribute to this important area of work in public health nursing
  • An opportunity to link my interest in child protection with developing my skills further in supervision, critical thinking, decision making, multi-disciplinary working and policy and procedure development
  • I was ready for a new challenge


Enjoyable aspects of the job/role

  • Diversity of work
  • I am never bored !!!!
  • Being challenged to develop my knowledge and skills
  • Working within a small team and getting the support I need to develop


Important success factors

  • The support of senior nurse colleagues who, through mentorship and supervision, have encouraged my career progression
  • Excellent secretarial support
  • Peer support from colleagues who have made even difficult work enjoyable


Advice for those considering the type of job/role?

I would encourage any nurse, midwife or health visitor with an interest in child protection to consider a Child Protection Nurse Specialist (CPNS) post as it does provide a real opportunity to effect change. I think it would be useful to talk to your own line manager about your interest in the role and then arrange to shadow a CPNS to get further insight into the role and responsibilities of the post. I would also encourage a colleague considering this type of post to do a Masters degree in a related field as this should develop critical thinking abilities.


Key skills that can be gained within this job/role?

  • A growing understanding of the complexities of child protection and human rights
  • Developing skills in supervision and support of staff involved in child protection cases
  • Increasing knowledge of a range of assessment and risk management approaches to child protection.


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