Worcester News Article – 21st March

Medical and healthcare information can be complex. But, if you’re disabled or have a sensory loss, you have a legal right to health and social care information in a way you understand, and communication support if you need it. For example, having information in Easy Read or large print and being able to have a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter at an appointment. Even though the Accessible Information Standard has been a legal requirement for health and social care services since 2016, Healthwatch England have found that nationally this is not always happening. That’s why they have launched a new campaign, ‘Your care, your way’ to ensure services are taking their duty seriously to provide information in a way that people understand.

We would like to understand more about people’s experiences in Worcestershire. Are you aware of the Accessible Information Standard? If it covers you, are you aware of your rights? What are your experiences of having the information and communication support you need when accessing local services?

Another issue that has been raised nationally is the difficulties people have been having in finding an NHS dentist and getting the NHS treatment they need. We know this has been an issue locally, as lots of people have contacted us about it. We are still keen to hear about your experiences, to help us have a current understanding and provide the patient perspective as part of local discussions about how to tackle this issue.

This week we will be holding a Public Board Meeting online via Zoom – everyone is welcome to join us on Thursday 24th March at 10am, to hear more about our work, in particular our Young People’s Health and Wellbeing Report and A&E Report, and to take part in the public participation. We will also be having a presentation from Worcestershire’s Adult Safeguarding Board of their Annual Report.

Please get in touch with us to share your experiences of both accessible information and NHS Dentists. You can do this anonymously via the Tell Us page of our website or get in touch by email or phone. You will also find further information about our Public Board Meeting, along with the Zoom link to join on the day, on our website.

www.healthwatchworcestershire.co.uk

info@healthwatchworcestershire.co.uk / 01386 550264