Unborn child, babies or toddlers

Best practice if you are concerned about the welfare of an unborn child, baby or toddler.

Always discuss your concerns with the senior person in your organisation who is responsible for safeguarding and child protection.

Assessment Tool

The protocol for pre-birth assessments and interventions has been developed to help support practitioners to effectively work with families where there is concern for the welfare of a unborn child, baby or toddler. It's been developed to support practitioners in their decision making and assessment processes when working with a pregnant woman, her partner and family.

View the protocol for pre-birth assessments and interventions in our documents library.

Guidance documents

The following procedures can be downloaded from the guidance section of our documents library.

  • guidance to support safe sleeping practices in babies and infants - which has been developed to help reduce the death rate of babies and toddlers by promoting safe sleeping practices
  • prevention of non-accidental head injury in infancy - which has been developed to help reduce to the incidence of shaken baby syndrome
  • practice guidance on bruising in babies and children – developed to provide advice and guidance for practitioners
  • guidance on managing babies with suspected birth marks - the aim of this guidance is to help identify suspected birth marks and mongolian blue spots, whilst ensuring genuine bruising is not overlooked
  • safeguarding children from dangerous dogs - which has been developed to help practitioner's work with families to help prevent dog bites and attacks

Resources for professionals

A new animation film, developed by a multi-agency partnership group in Nottinghamshire provides advice to practitioners about seeking an explanation from the babies carers and what action to take if no explanation is provided or an unlikely or inadequate explanation is given.

View the bruising on babies video. This should be viewed in conjunction with the Derbyshire practice guidance on bruising in babies and children. This describes the action that a practitioner should take if they become aware of a bruise or suspicious mark on a non-mobile baby.

Resources for parents

A short video: Shaking your baby is just not the deal gives parents and carers practical tips about how to respond when their baby cries for long periods of time, doesn't sleep or settle.

A don't shake your baby leaflet is also attached to this page and is designed to be printed out for parents.