Publication of ‘Children Adopted from Care in Northern Ireland 2017/18’

Date published: 27 September 2018

The Department of Health has today published the ‘Children Adopted from Care in Northern Ireland 2017/18’.

children adopted from care NI 2017-18

This bulletin details statistical information relating to children adopted from care during the year ending 31 March 2018. The tables within the bulletin present a range of information about these children and their adopters, including durations between different stages in the adoption process. The bulletin is based on the DoH statistical return AD1 2017/18, which was collected from each of the five Health and Social Care Trusts. 

Key Findings

  • Eighty–four children were adopted fro care in Northern Ireland during the year ending 31 March 2018 ;
  • The average age of children at the time of adoption was four years two months, three months younger compared to the previous year;
  • From the child’s last entry into care, the average length of time for a child to be adopted in 2017/18 was three years two months. This was two months longer than the previous year;
  • For children adopted in 2017/18, the average duration from the HSC Trust proposal that adoption was in the best interest of the child (the LAC Best Interest Proposal) to the Adoption Order was two years two months, two months shorter than in 2016/17;
  • Children adopted by Concurrent Carers (1) were substantially younger at the time of adoption (three years 0 months compared with the national average of four years and two months). They also had a shorter last duration in care (two years three months compared with three years two months).

(1) Description of Concurrent Carers and other type of carers/adopters can be found in Chapter 6 of the publication.

Notes to editors: 

1. This publication is available online.

2. About the data:

The source of the data contained in this release is the Departmental AD1 statistical return, collected from Health and Social Care Trusts and relating to the period 1 April 2017 to 31 March 2018.

3. This statistical bulletin was produced by Community Information Branch, DoH.

Further information is available from:

Community Information Branch
Department of Health
Room 11, Annexe 2
Castle Buildings
Stormont Belfast BT4 3SQ

Tel:      (028) 9052 2580

Fax:    (028) 9052 3288



4. For media enquiries please contact the DOH Press Office team on 028 9052 0575 or email  Out of office hours please contact the Duty Press Officer on 028 9037 8110. Follow us on twitter @healthdpt

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