HSIB report highlights A&E pressures and need for more joined-up child protection

13 April 2023

In response to a new Healthcare Safety Investigation Branch (HSIB) report into non-accidental infant injuries being missed in under-pressure A&E departments, NHS Providers director of policy and strategy Miriam Deakin said:

"The HSIB's findings are deeply troubling. We echo its calls for more specialist guidance and support for NHS staff who suspect that a child's injuries are no accident.

"Emergency departments are under extreme pressure from ever-growing demand. As the HSIB highlights, an environment of heavy workloads, time pressure and demands on staff all have an impact and raise the risk that the signs of abuse could be missed.

"This is yet another symptom of severe workforce shortages right across the NHS and social care. We need an action plan from the government as soon as possible to recruit many thousands more much-needed NHS staff.

"It's vital too that the NHS and other bodies, especially social care and the police, are joined up and can share information appropriately to protect children and young people from abuse."