Children and young people safeguarding 

We are committed to safeguarding and promoting the welfare of children and young people. 

Cambridgeshire and Peterborough ICB’s role in safeguarding children:

NHS Cambridgeshire and Peterborough Integrated Care Board (ICB) works with health service providers and a range of other local partner organisations in the county to ensure that all children and young people are protected. We are responsible for ensuring all the services we commission are safe and effective. We ensure that safeguarding is everyone’s business by working closely with many different people and organisations across Cambridgeshire and Peterborough.

Different types of abuse and neglect

Emotional abuse

Emotional abuse is when a child is deprived of love, warmth and affection or is persistently treated negatively, inconsistently, inappropriately or is rejected. This may include the child being constantly told that they are worthless, unloved or inadequate or the parent or carer having unreasonable and unrealistic expectations of the child’s abilities or making the child being made to feel frightened or in danger.

Physical abuse

Physical abuse may involve hitting, shaking, throwing, poisoning, burning or scalding, drowning or suffocation.

Recognising physical abuse

Bruising is a concern when bruises:

  • can be seen on parts of the body not normally harmed through play.
  • appear in or around the mouth (especially in young babies)
  • appear as small ‘grasp’ or finger marks to a child’s arms or legs.
  • look like they have been caused by a stick or belt.
  • appear to be of different ages (colour) in the same area.
  • appear the same on both sides of the body, legs, head or arms.
  • appear as bite marks especially when the marks appear to be those of an adult or older child (more than 3cm across)
  • are seen in a baby which is not mobile.

Most fractures are treated by a hospital. It is concerning when a child is not taken for treatment if they are suffering pain, swelling or discolouration over a bone or joint. Although it may not always be possible to know whether a child has a fractured bone it is difficult for a parent or carer to be unaware that the child has been hurt. It is rare for children under the age of one to sustain a fracture accidentally.

It can be difficult to distinguish between a burn or scald that has been caused accidentally or non-accidentally. As with fractures all burns and scalds should receive medical treatment.

Sexual abuse

Sexual abuse involves forcing or enticing a child or young person to take part in sexual activities, whether or not the child is aware of what is happening.

Sexual activities may involve physical contact such as sexual intercourse, buggery or non-penetrative acts.

Sexual activities may also include non-contact activities like involving children in looking at pornography, creating pornography, watching sexual activities or encouraging children to behave in sexually inappropriate ways.


Neglect is when there is a constant failure to meet the child’s basic physical or psychological needs in a way that is likely to cause serious damage to the child’s health or development. Neglect can include failing to provide a child with adequate food, shelter or clothing or failing to protect a child from harm or danger or failure to ensure access to appropriate medical care or treatment.

Contact NHS Cambridgeshire and Peterborough safeguarding team

Single point of contact:

Emails of a confidential nature, or those containing patient information should be sent from a secure account such as Please note that the ICB do not accept or process safeguarding referrals.