Peckover, Sue, Smith, Sue and Wondergem, Fiona (2013) Doing ‘Serious Case Reviews’: The Views and Experiences of NHS Named and Designated Safeguarding Children Professionals. Child Abuse Review. ISSN 0952-9136

Serious case reviews (SCRs), undertaken when a child has died or been seriously harmed, are an important feature of child protection in England. They are substantial exercises, but little research has examined the everyday work processes associated with their production. This study, undertaken during 2011, explored the views and experiences of NHS Named and Designated Nurses and Doctors for Safeguarding Children about their involvement in SCRs. Nineteen telephone interviews were undertaken and the data thematically analysed. The study found that doing SCRs involved additional work and staff did not always feel fully supported or prepared. Doing SCRs is a rigid and bureaucratic process which sometimes detracted from the case itself. The study also found mixed views about the value of SCRs and the extent to which they promote learning and child-centred practice. The findings contribute to overall understanding of how this process is undertaken, and help open up to scrutiny the work required and the challenges generated for those involved in SCRs.

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