Accessible Information Standard

Potterells/Uni of Herts

Accessible Information Standards Policy

Introduction and background

The Accessible Information Standard (AIS) is a new mandatory information standard for implementation by all GP practices by 31st July 2016

The AIS aims to ensure that people who have a disability or sensory loss receive information that they can access and understand (for example in large print, braille or via email and professional communication support if they need it such as an interpreter or sign language interpreter.

The standard directs and defines a specific, consistent approach to identifying, recording, flagging, sharing and meeting the information and communication support needs of patients, service users, carers and parents, where those needs relate to a disability, impairment or sensory loss.

It is particularly relevant to individuals who are blind, deaf, deafblind and/or have a learning disability, although it will support anyone with information or communication needs relating to a disability, impairment or sensory loss, for example those who have a mental health condition which affects their ability to communicate.


This policy applies to all staff working in the practice so they are aware of their responsibilities to all our patients at Potterells/Uni Medical Centre.  In particular, our receptionists need to be aware of the correct questions to ask our patients and be able to respond appropriately to any patient that requests an advocate.

Meeting the needs of our patients

Potterells/Uni Medical Centre will provide one or more communications or contact methods which are accessible to and useable by the patient, service user, carer or parent.  The method must enable the individual to contact the service and staff MUST use this method to contact the individual. 


In order to ensure equity and promote equitable access to services by people with a disability, impairment or sensory loss, organisations should be aware that it is their responsibility and not that of the disabled person, to cover the costs of meeting an individual’s information and or communication support needs.


Potterells/Uni Medical Centre will ensure that the following communications are introduced prior to 31st July 2016

  1. Web-site to be updated to advise of Introduction of AIS at Potterells/Uni.
  2. Notices to be displayed on both screens.
  3. All receptionists to be briefed
  4. Report to be run to identify all patients that may have accessibility issues. Individuals most likely to be affected by the Standard include people who are blind or deaf, who have some, hearing or visual loss, people who are deafblind and people with a learning disability.  However, this list is not exhaustive.  The report will be run every 6 months.
  5. Ensure that we have a method of obtaining leaflets in Braille.
  6. Ensure all leaflets for any campaigns eg Flu are also available in an easy-read version with large font
  7. Ensure that we always have the hearing aid loop on at the main reception desk and that is visible and available at all times
  8. Any appointments for patients with these needs, should always be a double appointment
  9. Guide dogs should be welcomed into the surgery and accommodated within the consulting rooms
  10. Notices for waiting rooms and outer doors

Communication With Our Patients

We want to improve how we communicate with our patients.

We want to make sure you can read and understand the information that have in the surgery and send to you.

If you find it hard to read our letters or if you need someone to support you at appointments, please let us know.

  • We want to know if you need information in braille, large print or easy read. We do have large print copies of our surgery booklet if you ask at reception.
  • We want to know if you need a British Sign Language Interpreter or advocate
  • We want to know if we can support you to lip-read or use a hearing aid or communication tool

Please do tell any of our receptionists if you need information in a different format or communication support.