Parents and families should be informed by a relevant professional that their child’s death will be reviewed. They should be informed that:
- the process is about learning lessons and not about culpability or blame,
- they will not be able to attend the meeting but may contribute information and questions,
- their case will be anonymised prior to discussion by the Panel, that information will be stored securely and that only anonymised data will be collected on a regional and national level,
- the Panel will make recommendations and a report on the lessons learned to the Local Safeguarding Children Board following the Review.
The Child Death Overview Panel Chair should consider what information is given to those professionals involved with the child’s family so that they, in turn, can convey this information in a sensitive and timely manner to the family.
In the cases of the death of children with life limiting or life threatening conditions, professionals should particularly ensure that unnecessary distress is not caused at a time when the family are dealing with the tragic but anticipated natural death of their child.