Accessible Information Standard: Making NHS and Social Care Services More Accessible

Have your say on the Accessible Information Standard review
Since 1 August 2016, all organisations that provide NHS care and / or publicly-funded adult social care must follow the Accessible Information Standard in full.

This means that patients, service users and carers should receive information in a format they can access and understand, for example in braille, easy read, audio or via email, and communication support if they need it – for example, a British Sign Language interpreter at appointments.

NHS England are now undertaking a review of the standard to assess the impact and to ensure that it is ‘fit for purpose’. They are keen to learn from the experiences of service providers, service commissioners and service users, as well as from representative organisations and other stakeholders. You provide feedback by completing a surveys before the deadline of 10 March 2017. Case studies and examples of good practice can be sent directly at england.nhs.participation@nhs.net

For further information please click here. 

From 1 April 2016 all organisations that provide NHS or adult social care must follow the Accessible Information Standard by law. Organisations must follow the standard in full by 31 July 2016.

The Standard aims to make sure that disabled people have access to information that they can understand and any communication support they might need.

The standard tells organisations how to make information accessible to patients, service users and their carers and parents. This includes making sure that people get information in different formats if they need it, such as large print, braille, easy read and via email.    

The Accessible Information Standard also tells organisations how to support people’s communication needs, for example by offering support from a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter, deafblind manual interpreter or an advocate. 

                      

As part of the standard organisations that provide NHS or 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 these 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
  • Act to make sure that people get information in an accessible way and communication support if they need it.

More information on the Accessible Information Standard can be found on the NHS England website.

To view the leaflet in full please click here and for the poster here.

Further resources about the Standard including toolkits, guidance and quizzes can be found on a microsite designed by NHS Brent, Harrow and Hillingdon Clinical Commissioning Group: www.brentaccessibleinformation.nhs.uk

Making health and social care information accessible in the East Riding

East Riding CCG is helping local NHS services and GP practices get ready to meet the standard.  For example we are working with the Practice Managers Forum to provide training and other resources for GP practice staff.

This year we have introduced a new feature to the CCG’s website to give all our website visitors a better experience. The aim is to improve access, in order to:

  • Help more people browse and access our information online
  • Make our content easily accessible to people with dyslexia, reading difficulties, visual impairments and English Language Learners
  • Give confidence to site visitors who lack digital skills
  • Extend our website’s appeal to non-native speakers in other language
  • Comply with legal obligations for website accessibility

Through innovative support software people can access speech, reading, and translation and online content can be read aloud in multiple languages to transform the user’s reading experience.

We continue to provide a full range of face to face and telephone translation and interpretation services for all CCG staff and GP practices this includes British Sign Language (BSL) and other services for people with sensory impairments.

We have also publish a number of core documents in alternative formats, which includes our Annual Report.

For more information about how we make our services more accessible please click this link.