NHS England launches accessible information standard

3 Jul 2015 10:54 AM

New framework set to simplify care information for disabled patients and their carers.

Disabled patients are set to benefit from improved healthcare after a new law comes into force to ensure information they receive is clear, consistent and easy to understand.

The Accessible Information Standard will be implemented on 31 July 2016 and aims to provide people who have a disability, impairment or sensory loss with information that they can easily read or understand. This means informing organisations how to make sure people get information in different formats, for example in large print, braille or via a British Sign Language (BSL) interpreter.

All organisations that provide NHS or adult social care are required to follow the new standard, including NHS Trusts and Foundation Trusts, and GP practices. As part of the accessible information standard, these organisations must do five things:

The Accessible Information Standard has been in development for over two years and overseen by NHS England, the Health and Social Care Information Centre, the Department of Health Directorate of Social Care, the RNIBAction on Hearing Loss,SenseCHANGE and independent patient representatives.

Tim Kelsey, NHS England’s National Director for Patients and Information, said: “It is vital that everybody understands the information they receive about their health and wellbeing. The Accessible Information Standard will mean that people with disabilities are not left in the dark, leaving them with the peace of mind to fully focus on their care. I’d like to thank all our partners for their hard work over the last couple of years as we turned the Accessible Information Standard into a reality. “