The Education Health and Care (EHC) Needs Assessment requires the local authority (LA) to seek advice and information about your child’s health.
The EHCP must specify any health care provision reasonably required by the learning difficulties and disabilities which result in your child having special educational needs (1). The EHCP can also include other health provisions not connected to your child’s SEN, if the health body thinks it would be useful to.
When the Needs Assessment is being carried out, the LA must seek medical advice and information from a health care professional identified by the responsible commissioning body (2). This information must include your child’s needs and what provision may be required to meet such needs and the outcomes that the provision should bring about for your child.
Any health care provision which educates or trains a child or young person is to be treated as special educational provision (3), and must be written into section F of the EHCP.
When the LA asks for medical advice, the health body must provide this within six weeks of the request (4), unless it is impractical to do so because:
(a) exceptional circumstances affect you and your child during that 6-week period;
(b) you and your child are absent from the area of the authority for a continuous period of not less than 4 weeks during that 6-week period; or
(c) you and your child fail to keep an appointment made by health during that 6-week period.
The local authority must not seek new advice if existing advice is agreed by health, the LA and you as being suitable for an EHCP (5). Remember though, any advice and information must include a description of your child’s needs, provision and outcomes. If it does not, it will not be suitable and new advice and information must be sought.
1 Children and Families Act 2014, s37(2)(d)
2 Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, reg 6(1)(c)
3 Children and Families Act 2014, s21(5)
4 Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, reg 8(1)
5 Special Educational Needs and Disability Regulations 2014, reg 6(4)