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Thursday, October 24, 2013

Ambulance Service launches pioneering learning programme

THE Welsh Ambulance Service has launched a pioneering learning programme that helps people with learning disabilities to discover more about the health service.

The ‘Beginners Guide to the Health Service’ on the Trust’s website includes easy-read booklets, discussion topics and interactive games and quizzes to help people understand what to do if they are hurt or feeling unwell.

The scheme is barely off the ground but has already been scooping coveted awards, including the Equality and Diversity award at the UK Healthcare People Management Association (HPMA) Excellence Awards, as well as the Overall Winner award.

Leanne Hawker from Partners in Healthcare, the team tasked with educating the public on the work of the Welsh Ambulance Service, said: “The Beginners Guide to the Health Service has been designed to be a fun and informative way of learning about what to do and where to go for help, if someone is hurt or feels unwell.

“This project has meant that patients are now able to make informed choices regarding their own health care, and use emergency services more appropriately so freeing up staff time for urgent calls.”

South Wales West AM Bethan Jenkins launched the scheme at St Phillips Community Centre in Swansea, where Swansea Council hosts the ‘Face It’ club for adults with learning disabilities.

Also at the launch were members of Swansea People First, an organisation of and for adults with learning disabilities, including the Trust’s newly-appointed Community Champion for People with Learning Disabilities, Darren Murugasan.

Leanne added: “People with learning disabilities are more likely to access healthcare services as they have higher levels of ill health than the general population.

“We are delighted to launch a learning programme that will help give people with learning disabilities the knowledge and confidence to be able to seek the right help, from the most appropriate healthcare service.”

You can find the ‘Beginners Guide to the Health Service’ in the Learning Disabilities Zone of the Welsh Ambulance Service website.

It also includes a parent/facilitator pack that can be used as a guide to help parents and support workers get the most from the programme.

See for more information.

* South Wales West AM Bethan Jenkins with Swansea
People First’s Darren Murugasan, who is also the Trust’s
newly-appointed Community Champion for People with
Learning Disabilities.

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