Online resource for West Sussex parents wins national award

Parents using Family Assist join County Council and NHS staff for the birthday celebrations outside County Hall in Chichester
Parents using Family Assist join County Council and NHS staff for the birthday celebrations outside County Hall in Chichester

An online resource helping thousands of expectant and new parents has ended a successful first year by winning a national award.

Family Assist is the UK’s only one-stop-shop of information for growing families, providing advice on a healthy pregnancy through to birth and beyond.

The interactive service, developed jointly by West Sussex County Council, Western Sussex Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust and Sussex Community NHS Foundation Trust with the support of Oracle, a global provider of enterprise cloud computing, is accessible from a computer, tablet or smartphone.

Women can sign up when they become pregnant and already more than 3,500 people are registered. Family Assist has been.

Last month it scooped a Public Sector Paperless Award, recognising Government digital transformation excellence, just days before its first anniversary last Tuesday.

It is the brainchild of Kelly Pierce, the county council’s consultant midwife on secondment from Western Sussex Hospitals, who said: “Winning this national recognition is the icing on the cake to a fantastic first year for Family Assist and to win Best Customer Experience shows it is making a real difference to people’s lives.

“New parents often find themselves flooded with information from lots of places so we wanted to put everything they need in one space, which they can access at any time, even if that’s during a 3am feed.

“Through different agencies working together in this new way, we have been able to bring together midwifery, health visiting and children’s health services in one easy to access platform to help families from pregnancy to early years.”

Only parents with a child under the age of one, or expectant parents due to give birth at St Richard’s Hospital, Chichester, or Worthing Hospital can currently register. Find out more from https://west-sussex-family-assist.custhelp.com/