Skip to 0 minutes and 3 secondsMARY RENFREW: Hello, and welcome to week two. Last week, we began to examine the complex set of issues that contribute to health inequalities here in Scotland and around the world. We discussed some of the reasons that health inequalities persist even when there are systems in place that should minimise or prevent them. The experiences that babies and young people have as they grew up are often the basis of inequalities. There can be all kinds of pressures on families, including poor housing, financial struggles, literacy issues, lack of educational support at home, and nowhere safe to play. Experience of physical, emotional, or sexual abuse, poverty, mental health problems, and substance use can lead to attachment issues and a lack of nurturing support.

Skip to 0 minutes and 55 secondsThe resultant stresses of growing up in circumstances like these can lead to long-term inequalities, in terms of children's health outcomes, educational achievement, and reduced ability to affect change in their own lives. This can become a vicious cycle. This is a complex, intergenerational problem, but steps are being taken to improve it. This week, we'll look at initiatives in Scotland that aim to impact on the lives of children in their early years, helping them to overcome some of the challenges they face, and to break the cycle of inequality. We'll also talk about improvement methods and approaches that you can use to help to develop your own projects and make positive changes in the area where you live.

Skip to 1 minute and 44 secondsThis week I'm hoping to hear from you. What initiatives are in place near you to help children get the best possible start in life? How can work with babies and children in their early years lead to more equitable health outcomes? I hope you'll enjoy this week's learning and the examples we'll be discussing. And I'll see you again next week.

Welcome to Week 2

Welcome to Week 2.

Last week, we talked about a variety of issues at the centre of health inequalities, from access to services to hidden inequalities and human rights. We also talked a little about implementing improvement projects of your own.

This week, we’ll take a closer look at how to minimise health inequalities – and the other types of inequality that come alongside this – by working with children in their earliest years.

As you’ll soon see, what happens at this time can set in motion many of the health and social impacts that a child will experience during his or her life. By intervening early, not only can we combat the child’s potential for experiencing inequality, but we can also improve outcomes for the family. Some of the interventions we’ll look at this week are about improving the connections between caregivers and the child, relationships that contribute to healthy emotional development.

Before we look at this week’s early years project, we also need to consider a couple of other issues – culture and gender – which impact on health inequalities for children and their families.

Share this video:

This video is from the free online course:

Tackling Inequalities Through Health and Social Care Design

University of Dundee

Get a taste of this course

Find out what this course is like by previewing some of the course steps before you join: