The Early Help Assessment and Plan

The Early Help Assessment and Plan (EHA/EHP) is an 'assessment and planning tool'.

We use it to support children with significant and complex additional needs who need specialist support from across education, health and social care.

This includes children who have:

  • difficulty communicating
  • sensory or physical difficulties
  • complex health needs.

The EHA/EHP was introduced in September 2021 to replace the Common Assessment Framework (CAF).

It is a way of working that aims to improve access and delivery of services to support you and your child. People from different organisations may talk to each other and share your information with your consent.

This means you will not have to keep repeating your story to lots of different people.

Usually, you will have an EHA/EHP when someone who works with your child suggests it as a way to assess and review your child's needs.

If you think you need an EHA/EHP you can speak to:

  • your GP
  • your child's nursery, school or college,
  • any professional who works with your child

How an Early Help Assessment and Plan may help

An EHA/EHP may help you and your family in the following ways:

  • Ensure a smooth transition from hospital to home where you and your family are always involved in the planning
  • Ensure that the right support is in place at the right time
  • Hold key information about who is involved in your child’s care, the tasks and roles they are undertaking and how we are working together to achieve the agreed aims

As part of the EHA/EHP process, you may have team around the family meetings.

Team around the family (TAF) meetings

A team around the family (TAF) meeting is your meeting. We will talk about what is working well for you as a family, and what we need to help you with or what is worrying you. Meetings can be held in hospital, at your home, a Children and Family Wellbeing Service (previously children's centres) and schools.

Lead professional

A lead professional is someone who works with you and your child and acts as a first point of contact. You can choose your lead professional. They are there to support you, they can speak with you before the TAF meetings to plan what you want to discuss. You will agree with the lead professional how often you'll have meetings.  They  will make sure you have a copy of the information from the TAF meeting.

Information for professionals

You can download EHA/EHP and CAF forms from the practitioners' section. CAF forms are not to be used for new cases from 6 September 2021.