The most important reason for reviewing child deaths is to improve the health and safety of children and to prevent other children from dying. The Child Death Overview Panel maintains a focus on prevention through all its work. Individual deaths and overall patterns of childhood deaths are evaluated by the panel to determine:
- If the deaths were preventable
- Modifiable risk factors (taking account of factors in the child, the parenting capacity, wider family, environmental and societal factors, and services provided to or needed by the child or family)
- The best strategy(ies) for prevention
It submits an annual report for the Telford & Wrekin or Shropshire Safeguarding Children Board which is responsible for publishing relevant, anonymised information to help improve policy, professional practice and inter-agency working to safeguard and promote the welfare of children.
The Child Death Helpline is a freephone service available to anyone affected by the death of a child of any age. It's staffed by volunteers who are all bereaved parents.