GPs, Dentists and Opticians


This procedure applies to all Children Looked After.


See Health Care Assessments and Health Care Plans Procedure for required frequency of health checks.

1. Notifications and Registration with GPs, Dentists and Opticians

As soon as a child becomes looked after, the child's social worker will arrange for the child's Health Care Assessment - see Health Care Assessments and Health Care Plans Procedure.

The social worker must ensure that the child is registered with a GP, Optician and Dentist, preferably retaining registration with a practitioner known to the child. The social worker should liaise with the provider/carer to make these arrangements. For children who are unable to be registered with a dentist, arrangements must be made via the Designated LAC Nurse for the child to have access to the Community Dental Service.

Details of the registration or any changes must be recorded, by the social worker, on LCS.

The child's GP should be recorded on LCS.

2. Appointments with GPs, Dentists, Opticians

If children appear to require or request it, appointments should be made for them to see their GP or other medical practitioners as appropriate.

When appointments are made, account should be taken of the child's wishes, for example, to see a practitioner of a preferred gender. Also, appointments should preferably be made which do not disrupt the child's education.

Parents and the child's social worker should, if possible, be consulted before making appointments; and they should be informed of the outcome.

As appropriate, LCS should be updated to take account of these appointments. For children placed in foster care and residential care, these details must also be recorded in the relevant child's Daily Record.

3. Frequency of Checks by Dentists and Opticians

Children who are looked after should have dental checks every 6 months or as directed by the dentist but no less than annually, arranged by the child's primary carer. The primary carer should also arrange checks by an optician at a minimum every 6 months, unless the child wears glasses, in which case the checks should be as required by the optician.

Dates of checks should be recorded on LCS and the health section of the Care Plan updated, with any treatment or follow up advised by the dentist or optician. The Placement Plan may also need updating.