National Guidance Documents and Policies

These reports and guidance documents have all been developed at a national level to support Local Implementation Groups and to establish consistency and equity across the country.

Roadmap for Service Improvement

The Roadmap for Service Improvement 2023 - 2026 Disability Services for Children and Young People is a targeted service improvement programme to achieve a quality, accessible, equitable and timely service for all children with complex needs as a result of a disability and their families.

Roadmap for Service Improvement – Brief Overview

This brief overview is a summary of some of the main points in the Roadmap. They explain what children’s disability network teams are, what the Roadmap is about and what the key actions are between 2023 and 2026. It is not designed to replace the full roadmap. Families can read the full Roadmap to get more detailed information.

Interim Guidance for Children’s Disability Network Teams on the Key Contact Role

This interim guidance assists Children’s Disability Network Managers and their teams in clarifying role of the Key Contact and putting it into operation. Review of the guidance will be informed by feedback.

National policy for Children’s Disability Network Teams on family engagement and attendance. June 2021

This policy takes a family centred approach to managing issues regarding attendance for appointments by engaging with families and talking to them about any difficulties they have in attending.

National Guidance for CDNTs on Individual Family Support Plans Revised June 2023

Each child’s Individual Family Support Plan is based on the family’s own priorities. The family and the team together decide on goals and the strategies and supports which will help meet those goals.

Progressing towards Outcomes-focussed Family-centred Practice

An operational framework or guide for Children’s Disability Network Teams, informed by the academic literature on family centred practice and the learning from a project completed in CHO 3.

CHO Governance of Children’s Disability Network Team Services 2023

The standardised CHO Governance structure and processes to ensure consistency and quality of services across all Children’s Disability Network Teams.

Children's Disability Network Manager Job Specification

The job description for this post, including the principle duties and responsibilities.

Telepractice: A Practical Guide for Children’s Disability Teams

Advice on delivering supports to children and families using technology such as video-conferencing and pre-recorded materials.

Report of Reference Group on Multidisciplinary Services for Children aged 5 to 18 Years 2009

The foundation for the PDS programme’s planned changes to disability services for children and young people.  

Guidelines for local implementation groups on developing a governance structure and policies for children’s disability services; October 2011 (Structures Guidelines)

The stages and items LIGs need to work through when developing the new structure for the delivery of services.

Framework for Collaborative Working between Education and Health Professionals June 2013

Sets out the links needed between the two sectors at national and local level. A guide to planning for transition stages for children is included.

Outcomes for Children and Their Families September 2013

This report sets out a new approach to measuring our services according to the outcomes achieved for children and their families. 

Guidance on Reconfiguration of Services under the Programme;February 2014

Takes Local Implementation Groups through the detailed planning required when services are being reconfigured. 

Guidance on Specialist Supports; January 2016

Supports for children whose needs require a level of expertise which are not solely met by the Children’s Disability Network Team or Primary Care services. 

National Policy on Access to Health Services for Children with Disability or Developmental Delay 2019

Interim Revised National Policy on Prioritisation of Referrals for CDNTs 2023

National Policy on Discharge and Transfer from Children’s Disability Network Teams 2017

The process involved in discharging children or transferring them to another service.

Interim Revised National Policy on Prioritisation of Referrals for CDNTs 2023

How referrals to Children’s Disability Network Teams are prioritised.

Guidelines on parent and service user representation on local implementation groups 24.6.13

Supports for parent representatives and suggestions on engaging children and young people to voice their views.

Report of the National Advisory Group on Specialist Supports for Deaf Children 2017

Recommendations for training for front line staff, consultation and specialist assessment when needed.

HSE Joint Working Protocol between Primary Care, Disability and child and Adolescent Mental Health Services September 2017

How services will work seamlessly for children whose needs cross these three services.

HSE/Tusla Joint Working Protocol December 2020

The roles and duties of the HSE and Tusla the Child and Family Agency, regarding children & young people with a disability.

Policy Framework for Children’s Disability Network Teams

A template that includes the PDS model of service, relevant national policies and guidance on developing other local policies.

National Team Development Programme

The programme for Children’s Disability Network Managers and Children’s Disability Network Teams to support the move to the PDS model of service.

National Policy on the Lead Agency Model 2019

A lead agency will have responsibility for services for children with complex disability in their assigned Children’s Disability Network.

Joint Working Protocol between Health, Better Start Early Years Specialists and Department of Children and Youth Affairs (DCYA)

The provision of health service supports for children with a disability attending pre-school under the Access and Inclusion Model.

PDS Local Implementation Plan

A template for PDS Local Implementation Groups and CHOs to use to develop their own plan.

National policy for Children’s Disability Network Teams (CDNTs) regarding children accessing private, independent, complementary and alternative therapies

How to ensure that the best interests of the child and the family are upheld when a child is attending a CDNT and a private practitioner.

Self-audit tool for Children’s Disability Network Teams

This should be completed regularly by the team to assess and monitor quality and to prioritise areas for improvement.