Hospital leaflet — Scope | Disability forum
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Hospital leaflet

Kemi Member Posts: 4
Hello I'm Kemi I'm a physiotherapist and I'm looking for help to make an information sheet for young people with learning difficulties. I want to explain what it can be like to go into hospital before they have to go. I want them to know who works there and what they do. I think it will help because I think going into hospital can be quite scary. I'm not sure how to make an information sheet yet. I have never made one for people with learning difficulties before, and I could really do with your advice about what to put in. I have had a lot of good advice from watching 'The Big Picture' by the Easy Info group. I hope people like my idea and I hope I can get lots of help.


  • Heather
    Heather Member Posts: 168 Connected
    Hi. When our son was awaiting surgery aged 3 we were invited to bring him to the ward. We took his teddy and teddy was photographed in bed, heart monitor, ears checked and a plaster put on. All images he could understand and teddy was much better after. A simple image approach which reassured mum and dad as well! Good luck, great idea. H
  • keyring
    keyring Member Posts: 1
    hi u ok i would love to help on ur hospital leaflet i think abit of participatory approaches would do a trick u get more info i am a trained to do it
  • Kemi
    Kemi Member Posts: 4
    Thank you Keyring (is that correct- or is it Kieran?). I am very happy that you can help and it will be also good because you have training in participatory approaches. I definately want your help. I need a few other people to help, because so far there is only us two!

    Thank you Heather for your lovely suggestion. I think your suggestion is a really good one and this will really work for little children. I do not know what age to target right now. There's a big difference between a toddler and a teenager! I think this is a difficulty and I will need to decide quite early on in the process.

    I am still waiting to hear from more people. I think that it will be good to have lots of ideas. Thank you once again for your interest.
  • Natasha Brown
    Natasha Brown Member Posts: 108 Courageous
    speak to your lcoal hospital childrens ward - the ones we have been too have already had very good picure stories aimd at younger children explainign with photos every procedure (my daughter found them babyish as she was a big girl going for couple procedures age 10!!) but they would have been perfect for my son with SN.

    be sure to use real photos of real people and things - not not not teddy bears.

    no need to reinvent the wheel when you can adapt what is there already?

    which hospital are you doing this for?
    or generic?

    i hink is great idea to do one specifically for older children with SN - so photos of older children/young people not three year olds etc. but simple language and clear photos
  • Natasha Brown
    Natasha Brown Member Posts: 108 Courageous
    with ref to heather above and teddy yes good for children who empathise with teddies but for children with ASD who never do role play with teddies ror dolls or older children the teddy analogy might not work as it requires leap of imagination. which my son with ASD does not ahve....

    real young people
    with real items
    can work much better
  • BusyOT
    BusyOT Member Posts: 76
    Hi Kemi, it is likely that your hospital will have a Learning Disability Liaison Nurse. The adult learning disability service might also have an Accessible Information person that produces just the kind of thing you need. They should have leaflets, videos etc that can help. Our local advocacy projects also make videos of specific procedures or interventions. Some websites that might help include:
  • Kemi
    Kemi Member Posts: 4
    Thank you Busy OT. (Sorry about the delay in responding. I had gone onto something else as I thought the discussion had been closed).

    That's really helpful information for any parent or carer who wishes to make the experience of going to an appointment or a admission into hospital less daunting.

    I wonder whether the information you've shared with me is widely known? I certainly didn't know about this service.

    I will pass on the information to any parent I meet in this situation in future.

    Cheers for that!
  • Bernard
    Bernard Member Posts: 3
    Our son had profound and multiple learning disabilities and we were frequently in hospital with him. A few key things worth mentioning from our experiences are -

    hospitals are not geared up to disabled people, just to 'normal' people who are ill. We avoided admission as far as possible and rather than stay there used GP referrals to Medical Assessment Unit or similar and home at night. They do not have enough staff, the right equipment or training yet.

    If admission not avoidable, the 'Communication Passport' is critical - all people with a learning disability should have one - usually done as part of 'person centred planning'. Need it ready before they go into hospital.

    Hospital staff are now being trained in needs of people with learning disabilities but it's painfully slow. Single most important thing is to have familiar carers there - even if there is opposition from funding agency or ward staff. Don't be afraid to use PALS (Patient Liason Service) or 'Customer Services and if you have to - make a complaint or ask to see the 'modern matron' or her equivalent.

    Hospitals are dangerous places for people with learning disabilities. A leaflet will be useful - there are some around here in Lancashire - but support who know the person is critical.

    Happy to help more specifically if required.
    best wishes,


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