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About our service

The Wandsworth Community Feeding Service aims to provide a service which is effective, child-centred and equitable, for children in Wandsworth (age 0-11 years) who have:

  • Dysphagia
  • Highly selective eating
  • Feeding aversion

Our service is commissioned to provide clinical psychology, dietetics, occupational therapy, speech and language therapy and a therapy assistant, all with special interests in childhood feeding difficulties and disorders.

Our service has two arms, the Community Dysphagia team and the Multidisciplinary Feeding team.

Community Dysphagia team

The Community Dysphagia team (CDT) provides a service for children with dysphagia requiring speech and language therapy input outside of the acute setting. The CDT service is responsive to each individual client’s needs, including:

  • Initial screening and clinical assessment
  • Intervention, including individual therapy and “Little Foodies” groups
  • Caregiver and mainstream nursery/school counseling and training
  • Follow-up planning

Multidisciplinary Feeding team

The Multidisciplinary Feeding team (MDT) functions in a collaborative and trans-disciplinary model to support families as they need, in the areas that are of most concern to them, providing a service to deliver:

  • MDT Feeding Clinic appointments, inclusive of clinical psychology, dietetics, occupational therapy and speech and language therapy
  • MDT Groups, including “SOS” groups, and “Food Scientist” groups
  • MDT Workshops for caregivers of highly selective feeders
  • Individual therapy for the most complex and high-risk restricted feeders
  • Occupational therapy seating assessments for children with dysphagia
  • Flexibility to provide tailored means of service delivery for children and families as clinically indicated
  • Support for the West Hill Enhanced Children’s Centre’s delivery of blocks of targeted support for lower-risk sensory/behavioural feeders (aged 0-5) through the “Food is Fun” programme

Referral Criteria

  • Families with a Wandsworth GP
  • Aged 0-11 (children aged over 11 can be referred, however additional funding may be sought from commissioners) and not attending a specialist educational provision

Acceptance Criteria

  • Children who have a history of chest symptoms / infections / pneumonias where there are concerns about the safety of their swallow and the contribution this may be having to chest health
  • Children with reported signs of aspiration / difficulty feeding to include choking, coughing, wet breathing / voice, weight loss or static weight gain, changes to colour or breathing when feeding
  • Children struggling with weaning or transitioning through textures of foods
  • Children with significantly restricted diets (less than 20 foods) or who show severe anxiety around mealtimes
  • Children who require specialist seating assessments and provision of equipment for safe feeding
  • Children requiring enteral feeding, and multidisciplinary support for management

Exclusion Criteria

  • Children who attend a special school provision – these provisions have specialist therapy teams on site
  • Children where there are concerns regarding body dysmorphia and related eating disorders such as anorexia or bulimia nervosa – these children should be referred to CAMHS
  • Children who are aversive feeders but who continue to struggle with unmanaged reflux symptoms – these children can be referred to the service once the reflux is medically managed

Referring to Us

Using our referral form, referrals can be sent either: