Accessible Information Standard

On 31st July 2016 a law was passed that aimed to make sure people with a disability or sensory loss are given information in a way they can understand, and the communication support they need.
learning disabled man talking to older man

Healthwatch Wokingham are aware that currently some vulnerable people are finding it more difficult than usual to access the information they need to stay healthy.

Any group that provides NHS Health or Social Care support needs to take steps to ensure that all people can access the information they need to stay healthy.

As part of the Accessible Information Standard, organizations that provide NHS or adult social care must do five things.

They must:

· Ask people if they have any information or communication needs, and find out how to    meet their needs

· Record those needs in a set way

· Highlight a person’s file, so it is clear that they have information or communication          needs, and clearly explain how those needs should be met

· Share information about a person’s needs with other NHS and adult social care            providers, when they have consent or permission to do so

· Make sure that people get information in an accessible way and communication            support if they need it

Through public engagement/ survey/ helpdesk Healthwatch Wokingham have identified the following areas where the public have difficulty accessing up to date information:

  • Hospital service changes
  • GP service changes
  • Dental service changes
  • Information for the deaf, blind or those with learning disability.

During the Covid-19 pandemic services have needed to change quickly and communicate these updates to the public remotely which has presented challenges for those people with additional needs. 

The following national organizations provide information in formats that can help those who may find it difficult to access standard communications about Covid-19.

British Sign Language

Easy read resources

Latest NHS guidance translated into 60 languages

Royal National Institute for the Blind

Links to local Wokingham support organizations:

Reading Deaf Centre

CLASP self advocacy group for people with learning disability

Promise Inclusion - Supporting adults and children with learning disability

Berkshire Vision

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