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So I opted out of health visiting

(12 Posts)
BillywigStings Tue 08-Jan-19 14:57:37

So I opted out of health visiting services as I find them stressful and intrusive (though in the letter I simply said it was inconvenient for me to see the HV at home due to my busy schedule now I was back at work - which is true) (yet to hear back from HV) and as 8 month review for DS was coming up I phoned up the doctor surgery and made an appointment for his review with the HV there. The receptionist sounded uncertain but made the appointment - only to be called back the next day saying that I should contact the HV by phone as she had never heard of those kind of reviews being done at the dr surgery and it was a vaccination clinic only. Basically she didn’t know what to do with me so I was to contact the HV to find out where I could go for that kind of appointment. What should I do now? Wait for the HV to respond to my opt out letter (I sent it a week before Xmas so I’m not too surprised at the delay). But the thing is, with my son’s 8 month review coming up I don’t want to be seen as avoiding him getting seen in case it looks like I’m trying to hide something.

I feel like I am being shoved towards speaking to the HV in person so she can talk me out of this and being socially anxious I feel like I’m creating a huge fuss and drawing attention to us whereas everyone I’ve asked advice for on forums online says it’s a simple case of opting out and then attending clinics for reviews and weighings etc and not to contact HV by phone but keep everything in writing!

What’s the best step to take? PS I am in Scotland

OP’s posts: |
JiltedJohnsJulie Tue 08-Jan-19 20:03:11

Sorry I’m completely confused by your post but maybe things work differently in Scotland.

I’ve never heard of anyone opting out of HV Services but what I’m more confused about is the fact that you wish to opt out but still want your LO reviewed by the HV. Surely if you opt out of a service, are opting out of the service completely?

We usually get letters when a review is due, is that what happens where you are?

lovely36 Tue 08-Jan-19 20:08:04

To be completely honest it makes you sound a little suspicious. Why the big fuss in her not going to see you? When the HV came to see me she was in and out. 15 minutes tops. I say just see her and get it over with.

Banana1979 Tue 08-Jan-19 21:18:08

My HV saw me and my DD in the childrens centre for our last 2 reviews
I thought Seeing the HV was mandatory . Id be too scared to.opt out in case they thought it suspicious..there are protocools around hidden harm i doubt you can fully opt out amd its your daughter that is missing out. HVS do a good job

Rainatnight Wed 09-Jan-19 06:50:07

I think it's as simple as the receptionist not being able to book those appointments, because they're only book-able through the health visitor. So if you want an 8 month review, you will have to book it through the health visitor.

I'm not sure why you opted out of HV at this stage of the game, though, especially if you still want them to do reviews? At 8 months, you're past the point of them doing frequent visits, so it is pretty much only the reviews at this stage.which you seem to want.

jessstan2 Wed 09-Jan-19 06:57:44

I never had much faith in Health Visitors, they seemed to make stuff up as they went along. You don't need a HV and I don't blame you for opting out. You can still do baby clinics and regular checks at your GP surgery, including vaccinations. Health visitors are not necessary.

Had a couple of really weird, quite funny visits from HVs, three in total, one of whom thought i was eight & a half months pregnant when I was as skinny as a rake! She thought I was the person who lived in my house previously. I was not even eight weeks pregnant, never mind months.

Prior to that, in previous house, the HV strongly advised me to give up cheese because my baby had colic and I was breast feeding. I had given up cheese, completely went off it, early in pregnancy and didn't get back into liking it again until child was at east six months!

Stupid woman.

BillywigStings Wed 09-Jan-19 07:33:15

I’m going back to work and while iv never had much patience with a stranger coming to my home and checking up on whether I’m raising my children to her satisfaction, iv even less patience now. This year, I’m working full time, going back to uni, and my husband will be working part time and being the main carer. Our house is going to be a state, my oldest plays up like crazy when we have visitors and the very thought of the HV sticking her oar in and judging us makes me anxious. I don’t really feel we need the check ups but was told that if you didn’t see health visitor you go to a clinic to get them. If it’s not required at all then that’s fine then.

Iv had two perfectly healthy kids and haven’t found our HV helpful particularly, and it doesn’t help that the first one I had didn’t seem to know how to hold a baby and had no kids of her own - everything she said sounded memorised.

I really hate this attitude that ‘if you’ve got nothing to hide, why bother’. It’s not right to say it looks ‘suspicious’ if someone chooses not to engage with an optional service to have a stranger come into your home. I’m happy to engage, just not in my home.

OP’s posts: |
needanappp Wed 09-Jan-19 10:31:14

I wouldn't say it makes you seem suspicious but if you want your child to have the check ups at the relevant points (which it seems you do) then I can't understand what the point is of opting out of HV services.

The only difference in what your describing would be that you take them to a clinic to be assessed rather than them coming to you for 20 minutes. At this age they only have a 1 year check up and then nothing until 2 anyway so it's not like they'd be constantly turning up or trying to make appointments.

JiltedJohnsJulie Wed 09-Jan-19 19:51:43

If you’re doing all of that and DH will be the main carer, and you’re worried about the house getting into a state, you should introduce him to the Organised Mum Method smile

I really wouldn’t worry about the HV judging you, your eldest’s behaviour or the state of your house. They’ve seen it all before, honestly. If the thought of her coming makes you anxious, couldn’t DH sort the review?

ThePants999 Wed 09-Jan-19 22:02:38

When they say "clinic", I'm pretty sure they don't mean the GP surgery! There are baby clinics where they hold regular sessions for things like weighing, or just to go in with any concerns, and check-ups are at those (not necessarily the regular sessions, but same location).

ElyElyOy Thu 10-Jan-19 13:30:17

Just because a HV doesn’t have children of their own doesn’t mean they can’t be a HV: sorry but that’s ridiculous comment to make. Does that mean only women can be gynaecologists?

You didn’t need to do a big dramatic “opt out letter” you could have just said an appointment was inconvenient and you didn’t need to see them: they don’t come out that frequently anyway. Or you could have called them and discussed it. By acting the way you are you are acting in a way that causes suspicion: it’s not suspicious to not want the visits because you are busy, but it is to be so OTT about it. Although if your husband is the children’s main carer then he could do the visits and sort these sort of issues out...

Call your HV office and ask for the assessment to be done at the HV child health clinic (or whatever they call it locally to you) - although in the areas I live and work in all assessments are done “in clinic” and not at home (other than the newborn ones) and are nothing to do with GPs.

mistermagpie Thu 10-Jan-19 14:54:18

I'm in Scotland and have two children (21 months and three years), with the second I asked the HV not to come because she was useless (I didn't say that to her face but spoke to her manager and said as much). I don't know what you mean about an 8 month review? Neither of my kids had that. The youngest had a 13 month assessment, which the HV did come and do at my house, because that's just the way they do it here and I was happy with that. Other than that I had no contact with the HV at all and I assume I could have refused the assessment if I wanted. I'm fairly sure you can also have these assessments done at their office because my older son had a 27 month assessment there.

Both of these assessments I just got a letter with an appointment (same as for vaccinations), I didn't request either.

If you don't want to see the HV you don't have to.

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