Hospital Passport for people with a learning disability launched
A new Regional Hospital Passport has been launched to help improve the experience of hospital visits for people with a learning disability.
The Public Health Agency (PHA), in partnership with the Regional General Hospital Forum for Learning Disabilities, health and social care trusts, and people with a learning disability and their carers, developed the passport folder which holds details about the patient’s likes, dislikes, how best to communicate with them and other helpful information.
The information in the passport will help all staff in general hospital settings make reasonable adjustments to support safe and effective care for people with a learning disability while also improving the patient experience.
Mary Hinds, Director of Nursing and Allied Health Professions at the PHA, said: “The aim of the Regional Hospital Passport is to ensure that the staff can make hospital visits as comfortable as possible for the patient.
“People with a learning disability and those who care for them have helped inform the content of the passport, and reflects the needs of all those involved, so we hope that this will make a difference to their experience of care within a general hospital setting.
“We expect that it will be used widely across all general hospital settings and will be seen as a practical resource for all who use it.”
People with a learning disability can bring a copy of the Hospital Passport with them when they attend hospital. If they do not bring one with them, hospital staff will provide a blank copy and encourage them, with support from a relevant individual, to complete one on arrival.
The passport has been developed in line with Guidelines and Audit Implementation Network (GAIN) recommendations for caring for people with a learning disability in general hospital settings.
Members of the Lilliput Theatre Company helped launch the hospital passport at the Long Gallery in Stormont today [Tuesday 9 May].
Caroline Morewood, Day Services Manager, Western Health and Social Care Trust said: “On behalf of the Western Trust I would like to take this opportunity to acknowledge all the work being carried out by the Lilliput Theatre Company in delivering such a wonderful range of day opportunities for adults with a learning disability. The group is delighted to be working in partnership with the Public Health Agency and Professor Owen Barr as chair on the launch of the Hospital Passport for individuals with a learning disability.
“I am delighted with this opportunity for the Lilliput Theatre Company to co-host the launch of the Hospital Passport at Stormont. This enables our members to enjoy a fully integrated day opportunities experience and participate in the launch of a very important project in improving the patient experience for individuals with a learning disability. The involvement in this project has an extremely positive impact on service users.”
Copies of the passport can be downloaded here
Notes to editors:
- The Public Health Agency worked with the Regional General Hospital Forum for Learning Disabilities, which is chaired by Professor Owen Barr, Ulster University, to develop the Hospital Passport for people with a Learning Disability.
- The passport has been developed in line with GAIN (Guidelines and Audit Implementation Network) recommendations for caring for people with a learning disability in general hospital settings.
- The development of the hospital passport involved consultations with a wide range of individuals with a learning disability, staff from Health and Social Care Trusts, voluntary organisations involved in the support and delivery of services to people with a learning disability, as well as family and carers.
- Guidance on Caring for People with a Learning Disability in General Hospital Settings. GAIN June 2010 GAIN. These guidelines identified 12 specific areas prioritised as the most pressing areas of need where improvement was required for people with a learning disability who use general hospital settings; one of these recommendations was in relation to the development of a Regional Hospital Passport for Northern Ireland.
- Review of Implementation of GAIN Guidelines on Caring for People with a Learning Disability in General Hospital Settings. Regulation and Quality Improvement Authority (RQIA) 2014. This report made a recommendation that a Regional Hospital Passport for people with learning disabilities should be developed and made available routinely for use when people with learning disabilities are in contact with general hospitals across Northern Ireland.