Accessible Information Report - June 2022

A new report by Healthwatch North Yorkshire and Healthwatch York has concluded health and care providers must do more to help patients who need information in an accessible format.
Report cover photo

Summary

The report recommends several actions for organisations that will ensure everyone receives information in the most accessible format for them 

Since August 2016, the Accessible Information Standard has stated that health and care organisations are legally required to provide a consistent approach to identifying, recording, flagging, sharing, and meeting the information and communication support needs of patients, service users, carers and parents with a disability, impairment, or sensory loss. 

However, the report shows that many people are not getting information from GPs, hospitals, dentists, care providers and others in a format that they can access without help. 

Our launch

Marnie a 24-year-old student from Henshaw’s College in Harrogate, has written a rap about how important it is to get information that she can understand, and she will perform this at the report launches on 21st June and 23rd June.

Our report shows that many people are not getting information in the right way. We urge organisations to adopt our recommendations and ensure they develop and implement action plans to ensure everyone gets information from health and care providers they can access and understand themselves.
— Ashley Green, Chief Executive Officer, Healthwatch North Yorkshire.

More than 200 people responded to the survey, which asked individuals about their experiences. Healthwatch North Yorkshire and Healthwatch York also spoke with more than 100 people in different groups about their experiences of accessing information. 

The system doesn’t anticipate that not everyone can use the phone. It is a legal requirement of the Equality Act that NHS Trusts make reasonable adjustments by providing alternatives to use of a telephone. The problem is that a lot of organisations haven’t moved with the times. It is amazing in the 21st century that these issues are still there.
— Ian, participant from Scarborough.

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