Children and Families Policy Research Unit


NIHR Children and Families Policy Research Unit


NIHR Children and Families Policy Research Unit

Conducting high-quality research to support the development of evidence-based policy to improve the health of children and families.
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Our key research areas

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Our specific research projects

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Meet the CPRU team


New data resource: Dashboard on Special Educational Needs in England

We have developed a resource that outlines data on the characteristics of SEN pupils and funding for SEN provision for local authorities in England.

Image of title sheet of dashboard

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Access Dashboard (for full functionality download copy to your computer)

Are infant mortality rates increasing in England?

Infant mortality (deaths in babies aged less than one year old) has been declining over past decades in England. Recently published data show that infant mortality appears to be going up since 2014, with some linking this trend to increases in child poverty. We used routinely published data from Office for National Statistics (openly available online) to explore why infant mortality might be going up.

infographic showing infant mortality rates

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Dyslexia and Mental Health

Higher levels of mental health problems in those with reading difficulties such as dyslexia are widely recognised. But the reasons for this are less clear. Our rapid review looked at existing evidence on the relationship between poor reading ability and/or reading disorders including dyslexia, and mental health problems.

We found three key pathways that explain the raised levels of prevalence.

Infographic showing three key pathways for dyslexia and mental health

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Using the community services dataset (CSDS) for research on health visiting

Health visiting is a national service focused on promoting the health and development of young children and reducing the impact of adversity and inequalities. Information about health visiting activity in England is collected in the Community Services Dataset (CSDS). The CSDS has not yet been used for research. We investigated the completeness and accuracy of dataset by looking specifically at the delivery of the 2-2.5 year review.

Infographic showing CSDS data completeness 2018-2019

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