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5.1.11 Placement Plans

Contents

  1. Introduction
  2. Who is Responsible and Which Parts to Complete?
  3. Recording Principles
  4. Placement Arrangements


1. Introduction

The Placement Plan/Placement Information Record

The MOSAIC Placement Plan is now one document which integrates the Placement Information Record. This single record is intended to replace the LAC records including the Essential Information Record. This contains the Consent of the parent to the child's placement in the Looked After Service and to medical treatment.

Parental agreement to medical treatment

It is particularly important to obtain parental agreement to medical treatment and for parents to sign the agreement to medical treatment section of the Placement Information Record. It is essential that an explanation is given to the parents about why this is required and what it means, and what the parents' and child's rights are regarding consenting/refusing to consent to treatment.

Where a child has significant medical needs, additional medical information may be required and should be added.

Where a child's medical needs are such that they require day-to-day care involving invasive medical treatment such as the administering of injections or pessaries, additional consent should be gained specifically for these actions.

It should be clarified with the parents whether there are particular treatments they would object to being administered.


2. Who is Responsible and Which Parts to Complete?

Placement Plan/Placement Information Record for children placed in residential care must be completed and updated by social worker in conjunction with the child's Lead Social Worker.

The Placement Plans for all other Looked After Children should be completed and updated by relevant social workers.

Wherever possible, the Placement Plan/Placement Information Record should be completed, signed and distributed before the placement.

It is a minimum requirement that the Placement Plan/ Placement Information Record is completed before the child is placed. For Emergencies see Emergency Foster Placement.


3. Recording Principles

The following guidance in relation to Placement Plans must be read in conjunction with Children's Services Policy, Values and Principles.

Always provide clarity of arrangements, using terminology that all professionals, parent(s), carers and children can understand. Ensure that arrangements are sustainable, providing clear timescales.

If possible, provide the names of people who are required or have agreed to undertake these arrangements.

If there is any risk that the arrangements may not be sustainable, include contingencies, which may include agreeing that a Placement Plan Review will be convened.


4. Placement Arrangements

It is only necessary to include arrangements that do not exist elsewhere or are not commonly known and agreed by all concerned. For example, if arrangements are set out in a Children's Guide or other document available to the child/parents, it should be assumed that they understand this; there is no need to duplicate information in the Placement Plan/Placement Information Record. However, it may be helpful to note in the Placement Plan/Placement Information Record that these other documents exist - and ensure that copies are available or given to relevant people.

If it is agreed that an arrangement be made which is contrary to that which is set out in this Procedures Manual, Children's Guide or elsewhere, this must clearly be stated; and the reasons for this change must be given. Any proposed departure from the Procedures Manual must be authorised by the manager of the home/practice manager.

In all cases, any risks posed to or by the child must be stated, assessed and Strategies must be adopted to reduce or prevent the risks. This may include contingencies in case the strategies fail or are compromised.

Amendments

Placement Plan/Placement Information Records should be regularly reviewed at meetings such as Looked After Reviews; the purpose of which is to ensure plans are kept up to date and continue to meet children's needs, as set out in a Care Plan or Pathway Plan.

However, Placement Plan/Placement Information Records are 'live' records which may also need to be amended as circumstances change.

Unless agreed and set out in the Placement Plan, these changes should normally be made as circumstances change.

If the record is amended, those who have previously received copies must be informed.

Contact Arrangements

Also see Contact with Parents and Siblings Procedure and Contact with Relatives and Friends Procedure

  1. State what arrangements have been made for contact with parent(s) and siblings - and what restrictions have been imposed. Has any person been forbidden from having contact? Note, no contact may be allowed with parents or siblings without the social worker's approval;
  2. Is it necessary to keep information from any person about where the child is placed; if so, ensure this is communicated to all staff/carers?
  3. If contact has to be supervised, state what the arrangements are for this contact, who will supervise it, where it will occur etc. Also state if there are any risks of abduction, if so ensure that plans are in place to protect the child. If necessary consult the Police on this matter. See Contact with Parents and Siblings Procedure for further information about the supervision of contact;
  4. State if permission for the child to stay overnight with Relatives or Friends has been given, if so, what the arrangements are;
  5. State whether the carer can authorise arrangements for the child to have up to four days overnight stays away, and in what circumstances - see Contact with Relatives and Friends Procedure;
  6. Ensure that clear details are given of the names, addresses and telephone numbers of those with whom the child may have contact;
  7. Does the child wish anyone to be informed where he or she is living? Is it necessary to inform and/or arrange for contact with any previous carers?

Health Care, Intimate Care/Touch and Disabilities

At the time of the placement, the carer should be provided with immediate details/arrangements regarding the child's health. Arrangements should be made for a comprehensive Health Care Plan to be drawn up as a result of a Health Care Assessment which must be arranged as soon as possible after the placement starts. This Health Care Plan must be in place for the first Looked After Review; and then updated as a result of further assessments or as circumstances change These plans are usually completed by Looked After Children's nurses and they must:

  1. State whether the child is disabled and how this should be managed including any prescribed or other medicines that should be given;
  2. State whether the child has any allergies; if so, how are these managed e.g. does the child require an epipen, which may be prescribed if a child suffers from extreme allergic reactions e.g. nuts, bee stings;
  3. Does the child use any special equipment, e.g. symbol book, hearing aid, tube-feeding aids, special footwear, special cup or bottle?
  4. Is it necessary to have any essential equipment to look after the child; do staff/carers require any specialist training or support?
  5. Does the child have specific dietary needs or restrictions for health reasons or through their own choice i.e. a child might choose to be vegetarian? 
  6. Whether there are any specific health care needs - and how the home will meet them;
  7. Whether it is agreed that Paracetamol or other painkillers can be used to provide relief for headaches, menstrual or other pain; also whether there are any restrictions on the use of non-prescribed medicines, Household Remedies or use of first aid;
  8. The involvement of the child's parents or significant others in health issues during the placement, and whether there are any specialists/consultants who may be contacted for advice;
  9. Any specific medical or other health interventions which may be required, including whether it is necessary for any Invasive Procedures and how they will be undertaken;
  10. The extent to which the child is able to retain or administer medication, or requires support to do so;
  11. Whether it is necessary for any immunisations to be carried out;
  12. Whether there is any specific treatment or Therapeutic Interventions, Strategies or remedial programmes required;
  13. Whether there are any intimate care arrangements/procedures (such as invasive procedures) to be included;
  14. Whether there are any concerns or arrangements regarding touch which should be taken account of (also see Touch Guidance);
  15. Whether there are any necessary preventive measures to be adopted;
  16. Whether the child is allowed to smoke and any measures agreed to reduce the behaviour;
  17. Whether there are any illegal or other activities including self harming which it is known or suspected the child is engaged in which may be harmful to the child's health, and the interventions/strategies to be adopted in reducing or preventing the behaviour;
  18. Whether the placement will contribute to any other health related assessments;
  19. Whether the home will contribute to any health monitoring.

Daily Routine

Provide details/arrangements relating to the child's daily, evening and bedtime routine, for example:

Mealtimes: Include details of any likes and dislikes, whether there are dietary requirements through reasons of religion, health, culture or choice, whether the child requires assistance and whether the child has any behaviours that need to be managed at mealtimes. For disabled children it may be important to record the position in which they eat and details of any specialist equipment.

Bedtimes: It is important to record details of the child's bedtime routine; times, stories, light on or off, door open or closed, teddy or comforter and whether the child during the night, has nightmares, wets the bed, is upset through the night. State whether the child is permitted a key to his/her bedroom.

Also, state whether there is any equipment required, for example a baby monitor, at night.

Behaviour Management or Therapeutic Arrangements

Consider the need for a Behaviour Management Plan where, for example, there are risks the child may present the behaviours listed below.

  • Absenting behaviour which may result in the child being categorised as Medium or High Risk;
  • Anxiety or withdrawal;
  • Bullying or other similar behaviours;
  • Challenging behaviour;
  • Drug or substance misuse;
  • Lack of awareness of person safety;
  • Offending or offensive behaviour;
  • Self harming behaviour;
  • Sexually exploitative or inappropriate sexual behaviour;
  • Violence or aggressive behaviour.

If these or other behaviours give rise to concern, state what Strategies or plans will be adopted to reduce risks and/or promote and develop acceptable behaviour and skills.

This may include advice from previous carers about strategies they found helpful; or strategies which they tried and found unhelpful.

State if there are any Physical Interventions that should not be used with the child. For example, if there are any medical or health care conditions or recent treatments that may be affected or complicated by the use of Physical Intervention. If unsure, seek medical advice.

Education and Work Arrangements

Refer to the Personal Education Plan (PEP), and state the extent to which the provider/carer will be expected to support the plan.

Provide the name of pre-school nursery/school/college or other educational provision attended by child and the arrangements for the child to attend, including dinner money and any support that may be required with clothes and transport.

State how the provider/carer will be expected to support the education/work provision, including the arrangements for out of school/work support, including homework.

State whether there will be a need for assistance to be provided in assessing the child's educational needs.

If the child is not attending school or is not working, state what arrangements are in place/agreed to support the child and/or get the child back to school/work.

State whether the provider/carer will be expected to liaise with school/work; or whether others will do so.

State who will receive and keep correspondence/reports relating to the child; and whom this information will be shared with.

Outline whether the provider/carer will be expected to attend meetings with the school and if not, who will.

State whether the child will be permitted to go on school trips or holidays; if so, will there be cost implications.

Identity

This may include arrangements/plans in relation to the child's growing sense of him/herself as a separate and valued person.

It includes the child's view of him/herself and abilities, self-image and self-esteem, and having a positive sense of individuality. Race, religion, age, gender, sexuality and disability may all contribute to this.

Does the child regularly attend a place of worship or require support in the home to worship; if so, what arrangements should be made to support this.

Does the child regularly attend any activities e.g. groups, centres or clubs, which relate to their racial, cultural or linguistic needs.

Self Care and Leaving Care Arrangements

Also see Leaving Care and Transition Procedure.

If the child is reaching the age of sixteen, is there a Pathway Plan? If not state what arrangements have been made to do this - and what support, including help with assessments, the placement will provide.

If there is a Pathway Plan, state what arrangements have been agreed to support the plan.

Whether or not the child is reaching his/her 16th birthday, arrangements should exist to prepare the child for the time they will leave the placement - to enable the child to move forward.

This may include arrangements or plans in relation to practical, emotional and communication competencies required for increasing independence, including practical skills of dressing and feeding, opportunities to gain confidence and practical skills to undertake activities away from the family and independent living skills as older children.

It also includes encouragement to acquire social problem-solving approaches. Special attention should be given to the impact of a child's impairment and other vulnerabilities, and on social circumstances affecting these in the development of self care skills. If people are identified to undertake tasks/roles, state their names; also include timescales if known.

Family and Social Relationships

This may include arrangements to help the child develop relationships with parents, siblings or carers; and social relationships including age-appropriate friendships with peers and other significant persons in the child's life.

It may also include arrangements or plans in relation to the child's growing understanding of the way in which appearance, behaviour and any impairment are perceived by the outside world and the impression being created.

State whether the child is allowed to have unsupervised time out, to go shopping, to undertake activities, play, visit friends etc. Alternatively, state what level of supervision is appropriate, and what arrangements will be made to increase the child's freedom and responsibility.

End