Healthy living

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The purpose of this page is to inform you about services available to help you to address any health concerns and to maintain a healthy lifestyle.

To begin with, it gives an overview of the health assessments you can expect to receive as a cared for child in Salford.

Initial health assessment

Upon coming into care, you will be invited to attend an appointment with a specialist children’s doctor (known as the community paediatrician).

This will normally take place at a local clinic in Salford. This initial assessment will involve an informal chat about your health and, after seeking your consent, you will be weighed and measured.

Once the assessment is completed, a Health Care Plan will be drawn up. Again, with your consent, this will be shared with your social worker and your carer.

Health reviews

School-aged young people will have their Health Care Plan reviewed each year by your school nurse and you will be invited to take part. This will take place either at school or at a convenient venue of your choice.

Once you leave school, the Health Care Plan will continue to be reviewed annually by the cared for children’s nurse up to your 18th birthday.

What does a health assessment cover?

  • Eating
  • Sleeping
  • Emotional wellbeing
  • Substance misuse
  • Sexual health
  • Any other health issues you may wish to discuss

Health professionals who are available to support you

  • Doctor (also known as a GP or general practitioner)
  • Dentist (it is recommended that you attend 6 monthly check ups or at intervals agreed with your dentist)
  • Optician (it is recommended that you attend 12 monthly eye tests)
  • Paediatrician (a child specialist doctor)
  • LAC nurse
  • STARLAC (a dedicated child and adolescence mental health service for cared for children aged 0 to 17). Links to other mental health and counselling service websites are given below.

Please note: it is important that you remain registered with a doctor and a dentist at all times. If for any reason you need to find new ones, please speak to your social worker or if you are over 18 years of age follow the link below.

Referrals to STARLAC are usually made by social workers, but are accepted from all child health and social care professionals. Where the referrer is not the social worker or pathway advisor, the social worker will be informed and their agreement to the referral will be sought.

Where a young person is 16 to 17 years and not referred by the social worker, consent of the young person will be sought to inform/include the social worker or carers as appropriate.

Health information

Please click on the information links below:

Did you know?

If you are a cared for child or care leaver known to Next Step, you may be eligible for a free gym pass for Salford Community Leisure owned leisure centres across Salford.

Check out Salford's emotional health and wellbeing directory here.

Pure Insight, connecting care leavers

Pure Insight can help care leavers living in Salford, they offer:

  • Mentoring
  • Mental health support
  • Support for parents
  • Education, employment and training support
  • Group activities and peer support
  • Donations

Download the Pure Insights guide (Adobe PDF format, 1.7mb)

Other useful websites

Mental health

Steps Ahead
Steps Ahead is a project for care leavers in Salford to help them with their mental health. It includes a dedicated outreach GP and link worker.

42nd Street
42nd Street provides free and confidential services to young people (aged 11 to 25) who are under stress or experiencing mental health difficulties.

Emerge is a CAMHS community mental health service for 16 and 17 year olds. Although based in Moss Side (Manchester), staff are able to meet with young in Salford venues (such as Gateway Centres).

Sexual health

R U Clear?
R U Clear is a national website which provides information and advice on sexual health matters. There are links to local walk-in centres where you can be tested for sexually transmitted diseases.

Shine offers free and confidential sexual health and contraception advice to young people up to their 19th birthday.

Substance misuse

Talk to Frank

Smoking cessation


Quit smoking

Keeping fit advice

NHS tips and advice to keeping fit and healthy

Diet and eating

Here are some simple recipes from the BBC Good Food website that young people prepared with the help of Greater Manchester Youth Network, who deliver cooking sessions to young people involved with Next Step.

More recipes from the BBC

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