Health visitor share and learn network

Staff talking

11 / 4 / 2014 3.54pm

Our health visitor share and learn network is a free and supportive forum for health visiting service and workforce managers and practitioners working for NHS service providers.

The role of share and learn

Our meetings are for managers and practitioners, who are responsible for the delivery of the health visitor implementation plan, to get together with colleagues from other organisations. They provide an opportunity to discuss working towards the same goals and share experiences, challenges and solutions in an open and informal environment.

They also allow us to listen to what's important to you and develop tools and resources to help you with the workforce challenges that you are facing as you work to implement your plan. This means that we can represent you and communicate the key themes coming out of your discussions to policy makers, to ensure that policy is informed by you, that it is aligned to, and responding to, what is happening in practice.

The format of meetings

NHS Employers hosts one meeting in the North (Leeds) and one in the South (London) every couple of months. Each meeting runs between 10am and 3.30pm with lunch and networking opportunities.

The agenda is driven by network members and their needs and always includes interesting presentations and discussions either from members or external speakers. Each meeting operates under Chatham House rules so you can discuss challenges openly and honestly with a view to working in partnership and finding solutions to improve your patient and staff experience.

Discussion topics

The focus of share and learn meetings is on issues related to growing and developing the health visiting workforce.

A flavour of topics discussed at previous share and learn meetings includes;

A successful Health visitor retention strategy - demonstrated by Jill Day, Healthy Child Programme Manager from Walsall Healthcare NHS Trust. See our own health visitor retention guidance

Restorative supervision - with a presentation from Dr Sonya Wallbank, Consultant Clinical Psychologist and Research Fellow at Warwickshire NHS FT.

Communities of practice for health visitors. Colleagues from RDASH NHS FT and Hertfordshire University have shared their experiences of setting up a learning forum.

The development of assistant practitioner roles, and investment in the support workforce to improve health visiting services. Read about how 5 Boroughs have done this here.

Staff engagement, and the use of social media to improve engagement with health visiting staff and communities. Access NHS Employers guidance on staff engagement and social media in the NHS.

We have also recently had updates from the Professional Officer for health visiting on the integrated 2-2.5 year review, and demonstrations of tools some colleagues are using to help them with workforce and caseload planning. 

Joining share and learn

We always welcome new members to our share and learn network, to enable us to effectively represent the health visiting workforce. It is free to join, and you don’t have to commit to attending every meeting.  The only criterion is that you are an NHS health visiting manager or practitioner with a responsibility for implementing the health visiting plan in your organisation.

To find out more, or if you would like to attend future meetings, or simply be kept up to date with health visiting workforce developments, please email 

Future meetings

30 June 2015 Leeds, Brewery Wharf 10:15am

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