Accessible Information Standard

The Accessible Information Standard – meeting your communication needs

The Accessible Information Standard tells NHS and social care organisations how to make information accessible to patients, service users and their carers or parents whose needs relate to a disability, impairment or sensory loss.

This includes making sure that people get the appropriate support to help them communicate, for example offering support from a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter or deafblind manual interpreter, information in audio, Easy Read or communication via email or text.

This is a legal requirement of the Equality Act 2010 and applies to all organisations included within the Health and Social Care Act.

We must do five things to meet the Accessible Information Standard:

  • Ask (identify) if people (patients, parents and carers) have any information or communication needs and find out how they would like those needs met
  • Record those needs, and consent, in a way that is highly visible on the electronic and/or paper record
  • Flag on the person’s electronic record, and any paper record
  • Share information about the person’s needs with other teams, services and other agencies and providers during referral, discharge or handover
  • Act (meet the needs) – make sure people get their information in the way they have requested and have their communication needs met.

More information about the Accessible Information Standard is available in other formats on the NHS England website.

There are many good reasons why Oxleas NHS Foundation Trust is working on improving the provision of the accessible information standard:

  • Improve health and wellbeing amongst our service users and patients
  • Empower you to get involved and make decisions about your care and treatment
  • Improve patient safety by helping you to understand and follow information regarding your care and treatment
  • Address the barriers to communication
  • Improve patient experience and satisfaction.

How can we help you?

We can provide different types of communication support or information in different formats. Please tell us as soon as possible, ideally before your appointment, what support you need or ask someone to tell us on your behalf.  A telephone number and email address will be on your appointment letter.  If you can’t find the letter you can contact our Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS).

Information for carers and families

We have a range of information for carers and families which includes leaflets and sources of support.

Easy Read Information

There is a range of Easy Read information on our Health and Wellbeing section.

You can also ask the service or person you see at Oxleas for appointment letters in Easy Read and information about your health condition.

British Sign Language (BSL)

We can arrange a BSL interpreter for you or for Sign Supported English, Lip Speaker or Sign-along. Please ask the service to arrange this or get someone to ask on your behalf.