Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital Meeting Tuesday 8th January 2019

On Tuesday 8th January Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital (NNUH) held a meeting at Equal Lives with people who use their services. The purpose of the meeting was for the hospital to get feedback on how they can improve their communication with people who use their services and to hear their views.

Lots of things were discussed at the meeting and the key points raised were:

  • Visually Impaired People needed better layout of information and access to information in different formats
  • British Sign Language users raised issues with interpreter requirements for appointments as they were often asked for and not booked leaving family members to interpret information. Also there was a problem with not receiving information in alternative formats (e.g. texts or visual signage) and staff calling out a Deaf Patients name which is not accessible.
  • Some attendees with learning difficulties and mental health issues raised the need for clear, understandable information and not having to wait for long periods of time, which can lead to confusion and anxiety. They also highlighted the benefits of using a health passport (a small document that outlines an individual’s health and support needs).
  • In addition some issues were raised around access, particularly around the parking provision for Blue Badge holders and the difficulties of having to take Blue Badges to reception to have them validated and then having to return them to the car.

    NNUH representatives highlighted the Accessible Information Standard, which is what people using their service should expect as a minimum as required by law. More information can be viewed here: https://www.england.nhs.uk/ourwork/accessibleinfo/

    Tom Fadden, Chair of Equal Lives, said,

    “The event was successful in highlighting the ways improvements could be made to communication of information and access. It also provided the opportunity to feedback on good practice. I believe this was the first time an NHS hospital has consulted its users in this way.”

    Our membership officer, said

    “This was a great opportunity for the hospital and disabled people to get together to work constructively to improve the accessibility of all communication related to attending the hospital.
    The meeting went really well and we were pleased that the staff from the NNUH wish to carry on engaging with those who use their services going forward. Hopefully this will be the start of a positive change at the hospital and an example of the benefits in working together in this way.”

    If you would like more information on how to get involved with the next feedback session please email communications@equallives.org.uk

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