Catching Children’s Continence

Jennifer Walsh, Community Children’s Nurse

Powys Teaching Health Board


NICE estimate 900,000 children and young people suffer with continence problems, that is bladder and bowel dysfunction. Put simply, one in every 12 children will have wetting and soiling problems, but only one in three families will seek help. The impact of having continence issues will have a profound effect on their self-esteem, education, family and social relationships. This can affect them into adulthood and has the ability to prevent them from reaching their full potential.


  1. Scoping current service provision for child and family with continence issues in Powys: Findings indicate lack of absence of service provision;
  2. Exploration of current governance that establishing an integrated community-based paediatric continence service has the potential to reduce emergency admissions by 80%, and a significant reduction in consultant led OPD (constipation/ bedwetting are now the most common reasons for referral); and,
  3. Introduction of a new service pathway for paediatric continence.

Tier 1 to Tier 3 continence pathways


Shifting services to community based care, and access to timely and effective treatment will reduce complications, and result in acute problems not becoming chronic, thus reducing subsequent future resource demand.

Part of cohort Bevan Exemplar Projects 2016-17