Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP) – information for all

Since 1 April 2008 Local Safeguarding Children Boards (LSCBs) have been required to review the deaths of all children who normally reside in their area (excluding stillbirths and legal terminations of pregnancy). The regulations are outlined in Working Together to Safeguard Children and the CDOP statutory and operational guidance. 

The purpose of the child death review process is to collect and analyse information about the death of each child who normally resides in Manchester with a view to identifying any matters of concern or risk factors affecting the health, safety, or welfare of children, or any wider public health concerns.

Data is collected from all known agencies that may hold information on each child using Department for Education data collection forms.

Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP)

A Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP) reviews the deaths (excluding stillbirths and legal terminations of pregnancy) of all children who are normally resident in the local authority area and ensures there is a coordinated response by relevant organisations to an unexpected death of a child.

The CDOP also collect and analyse the information about all deaths of children and young people, regardless of the infant’s gestation, up to 18 years of age (excluding legal terminations of pregnancy and stillbirths) within the area. From this information, CDOP can identify patterns or trends and take action to prevent some similar deaths in the future.

The aims of the child death overview process are:

  • to learn from all child deaths, enabling changes which prevent future deaths;
  • to standardise the way in which each death is reviewed;
  • to ensure that families are offered bereavement services.

Manchester Reducing Infant Mortality Strategy

Infant mortality is a sensitive measure of the overall health of a population. It reflects the apparent association between the causes of infant mortality and other factors that are likely to influence the health status of whole populations,such as their economic development, general living conditions, social well-being, rates of illness and the quality of the environment.

In March 2019 the Manchester Reducing Infant Mortality Strategy 2019/24 was published on the MCC website at www.manchester.gov.uk/reducing_infant_mortality_strategy

This strategy was developed to support the reduction in rates of infant mortality in Manchester; it is a collaboration between services and communities – recognising that everyone has a role to play.

The Child Death Review Process

Agencies must notify their LSCB of a child death; the Manchester procedures can be found within the GMSP procedures at greatermanchesterscb.proceduresonline.com

The Regulations relating to child death reviews
Child death review partners are local authorities and any clinical commissioning groups for the local area as set out in the Children Act 2004 as amended by the Children and Social Work Act 2017.

The statutory responsibilities for child death review partners and how the boundaries for child death review partners should be decided locally are set out in Working Together and the CDOP statutory and operational guidance. 

To notify the CDOP of the death of a child
All representatives from each key agency will be asked to complete as much of an agency report form, sent by the local Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP) as they are able, drawing on a review of the agency records and discussions with individual practitioners. Some aspects of the form are specific to individual agencies but all should be able to prepare summaries of relevant information available to them.

Forms to help child death overview panels (CDOPs) assess the causes of a child’s death as part of the child death review process can be downloaded from the government website at www.gov.uk/child-death-reviews-forms-for-reporting-child-deaths

Once all investigations have concluded and agency reports are received, the local CDOP officer will collate the information onto one form for eventual consideration at the local Child Death Overview Panel. All information will be anonymised when completing the Form C.

Local information is collected and a CDOP Annual Report is submitted to the LSCB. The local Child Death Overview Panel must consider what lessons might be learned and whether they can make any local, regional or national recommendations to improve practice. These recommendations must be shared with the Local Safeguarding Children Board to inform health trusts, children’s services and police, as well as specialist agencies (such as the fire services, or traffic authorities) as appropriate. Local information is collected and an annual report is submitted to the LSCB.

How does the review happen?
Information about a child and the circumstances surrounding his or her death is collected and summarised into a short report from records held by hospitals, local health services, schools, police, children’s social care services and any other involved agencies.

A local Child Death Overview Panel of doctors, other health specialists and child care professionals must consider the report to be clear about:

  • What caused the child’s death
  • Whether, if the death was unexpected, there was an appropriate rapid response
  • What additional training or resources might be needed to provide an effective inter-agency response
  • Any public health issues
  • What support and treatment (if any) was offered to the child and their family.

The local Child Death Overview Panel must consider what lessons might be learned and whether they can make any recommendations to improve practice. These recommendations must be shared with the local health trusts, children’s services and police, as well as specialist agencies (such as the fire services, or traffic authorities) as appropriate.

Manchester Child Death Overview Panel (CDOP)

If you are aware of a child death and the child is not a resident of Manchester please still inform the local CDOP Officer who will ensure the relevant information is passed on to the respective authority.

To contact the Manchester CDOP Officer please see our Business Unit page

Published annual CDOP and SUDC reports

The latest Manchester CDOP annual reports:

Four CDOPs cover all of Greater Manchester – all collect data in a common format to allow sharing of information in order to build a picture of emerging themes and patterns across the sub-region. The findings from child deaths is used to inform local strategic planning on how to best safeguard and reduce harm in children and to promote better outcomes for our children in the future. Data is also returned annually to the DfE to inform the national picture.

The latest annual report of the four Greater Manchester CDOPs:

Information and data from local CDOPs is collated to produce a National Report on themes and trends identified across England on Child Deaths; this can be found on the government website at www.gov.uk.

CDOP Contacts

Manchester CDOP
In the first instance please contact the Manchester CDOP Coordinator – see our Business Unit page

Nationally
Contact details of the person responsible for dealing with child death notifications in every child death overview panel (CDOP) in England can be found on the government website at  www.gov.uk.

Her Majesty’s Coroner

Details of how to contact the Manchester Coroner and the Coroner’s Office can be found on the City Council’s website at www.manchester.gov.uk.

A useful government guide to coroner services and investigations  can be found at  www.gov.uk/guide-to-coroner-services-and-coroner-investigations

Downloads available on this page:

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