The NHS has to make it as easy for disabled people to use health services as it is for people who are not disabled. This is called making reasonable adjustments.
These could be things like:
- making sure there is wheelchair access in hospitals
- providing easy read appointment letters
- giving someone a priority appointment if they find it difficult waiting in their GP surgery or hospital
- longer appointments if someone needs more time with a doctor or nurse to make sure they understand the information they are given.
We have developed two resources for use by clinicians and non-clinicians supporting the COVID-19 vaccination programme. They provide top tips on communicating with people with a learning disability and autistic people and highlight the range of reasonable adjustments that should be considered to ensure that a vaccination appointment goes well.
The Misfits Theatre Company have been telling us how reasonable adjustments can help people with a learning disability and autistic people live longer and healthier lives.
Reasonable adjustments are a legal requirement to make sure health services are accessible to all disabled people. Please watch this film to find out how a simple reasonable adjustment can make a big difference to a person’s experience of quality and access to care.
How can I help make sure these reasonable adjustments are made?
If you support someone with a learning disability please make sure they have good access to healthcare by supporting them to:
- be on the GP learning disability register
- ask their GP practice for additional information adding to their summary care record
- have the right health checks, screening and immunisations
- carry out the actions in their health action plan.
Information for health staff
We are trying to make sure that when people with a learning disability go to a place which provides health care that staff know if they need to make reasonable adjustments for them.
To do this we are developing a way of putting something on a person’s health record which shows that reasonable adjustments might need making. We call this a ‘reasonable adjustment flag’ and any organisations that are providing care would be able to see the flag.
This work is being tested with people with a learning disability at the moment and we hope it will be available to everyone soon.
Easy read information is available about the importance of sharing information about your support needs.
What digital flagging means for patients
This short film is about how sharing information can help staff in health services know the right way to work with people with a learning disability and/or autism.
Another way to make sure you get the reasonable adjustments you need is by adding additional information to your summary care record.