A programme that offers 'intensive' support to young mums and dads will make a 'real difference' to the life chances of disadvantaged families, an independent evaluation report has found.
Family Nurse Partnerships work with young parents in their own homes from early pregnancy until their baby is two years old. The visits are in addition to those of health visitors, and provide a greater level of care and practical help for young families who need assistance to care for their babies and themselves.
The report says the Family Nurse Partnerships have the potential for 'substantial health and well being benefits' for the children and families involved.
Earlier reports on the scheme found positive potential impacts on breastfeeding and reduced smoking in pregnancy.
The Family Nurse Partnerships have been trialled in England since 2007 and are based on a US model. Health Secretary Andrew Lansley has already pledged to double the numbers of disadvantaged families taking part in the programme from 6,000 to 13,000 by 2015.
What do you think?
Should their be more initiatives like this available for young parents?
Or do such safety-nets encourage youngsters to start families?