Complying to the Accessible Information Standard, part of the Health and Social Care Act 2012, will be a requirement for practices in England by July 31, 2016. It has been put in place to ensure people who have a disability, impairment or sensory loss are able to access and understand any information or communication support they need. The practice will make sure that patients and service users, and their carers and parents, can access and understand the information they are given.
This includes making sure that people get information in different formats if they need it, for example in large print, Braille, easy read or via email. The practice will also make sure that people get any support with communication that they need, for example support from a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter, deafblind manual interpreter or an advocate.
By July 31, 2016, the practice will:
- Ask people if they have any information or communication needs, and find out how to meet their needs.
- Record those needs clearly and in a set way.
- Highlight or flag the person’s file or notes so it’s clear that they have information or communication needs, and how to meet those needs.
- Share information about people’s communication needs with other providers of NHS and adult social care, when they have consent or permission to do so.
- Take steps to ensure that people receive information which they can access and understand, and receive communication support if they need it.
Exclusions to the Standard
Signage in the practice, the provision of information in foreign languages, and meeting individuals’ preferences.