On Thursday 8th February SUSO were invited to attend an NHS Have your say forum. The forum was looking at how the NHS can support adults with a learning disability, autism or both when they are visiting health care staff. Health care staff are people like your doctor, nurse, dentist, ambulance staff, or anybody else who works for the NHS. NHS England want to put a note on your health record to tell NHS staff that you need extra help or support. The note on your record is called a ‘flag’. The flag could tell NHS staff:
- About your disability and how it affects you
- What help you would need to use health services
- What NHS staff can do to make things easy for you, for example give you longer appointments
This information would be seen by doctors and nurses in all health services you might use, for example in hospitals and at the doctor’s surgery. They would find the information on your health record, on the computer. They would use this information to make sure they give you the best care possible.
You would choose what information was on your record, and what information you did not want to share. This has not been done yet. The NHS wanted to find out what people think about this so we were invited along to tell them what we thought about it. The event was held at Manchester United Football Stadium which was very exciting to visit. There was lots of different workshops and activities going on and we split into two groups because we wanted to go to different workshops. Some people did roleplay, some talking, writing and drawing and some of us even took part in designing our own campaign. We had lots of chances throughout the day to say what we thought and also to share our own stories about the NHS both positive and negative.
We look forward to seeing how our ideas and stories are used to help the NHS support us getting better healthcare.