Monthly Archives: September 2017

Be healthy, be happy, don’t miss out

Care for someone with a learning disability? Don’t let them miss out

If you care for someone with a learning disability, they can get extra support when visiting their doctor – all you or they have to do is ask for their name to be added to the GP learning disability register. You can help them do this by talking to their doctor’s surgery or use this template letter. Complete this letter and give it to the doctor during their next appointment.

Once on the register they can speak to their doctor about having a free Health Check every year. There are lots of reasons why they should have their Annual Health Check if their doctor says they can have one, including:

  • Not always knowing if they are unwell – the doctor can spot signs that you or the individual might miss,
  • Getting better treatment – for example new medication
  • It offers an opportunity for them to talk to the doctor about anything worrying them
  • The doctor can provide advice on lifestyle choices, such as diet
  • They can have more control in their own health and body

Make sure the doctor gives them a health action plan after the health check – this includes goals for them and the doctor to work towards together.

Another way you can ensure they are getting the very best healthcare is by supporting them to give their doctor consent for their information to be shared. With the individuals permission, or in some cases the carer or family members permission, the doctor can add additional information to the individuals Summary Care Record (SCR).

Everyone has a SCR – speak to the doctor about the individual giving consent for Additional Information (AI) to be stored, this can include details of their learning disability, any physical/sensory disability, communication needs, contact details of a carer or next of kin etc., allows all health professionals who care for them to know their latest needs and requirements.

At Mencap, they have worked with NHS England to produce some guides to help you, or the person you support, to access better healthcare.

Download a full guide here.

Download an easy read letter template here.

Read more from Mencap on Annual Health Checks

Bereavement Resources and Training

There are now 3 new resources available to support bereavement and loss in special schools (and other SEND settings).

1. A Special Kind of Grief

The complete guide for supporting bereavement and loss in special schools (& other SEND settings). This resource book is for teachers and other school staff and includes everything that a special school needs to manage bereavements sensitively and effectively.

Available as a paperback book and ebook.

2. Remembering Lucy

A children’s story book about grief and bereavement. Joe, an 8-year-old boy, who attends a special school, tells the story of his school and what happens when one of his friends, Lucy, dies

Available as a hardback book and ebook, (perfect for displaying on a whiteboard).

Both books are published by Jessica Kingsley

You can purchase these books from:

Jessica Kingsley



3. Bereavement & Loss Widgit Symbol Pack

A set of resources, (including social stories, flashcards etc.), designed to help children cope with the issues of death and support them with the grieving process.

You can buy this symbol pack from Widgit

Bereavement & Loss Training

If your school needs specific bereavement and loss training please contact: Backpocketteacher

All training is designed to meet the individual needs and requirements of the school/setting.

Training days

There are also various training days running across the South West.

  • October 13th 2017 Dorchester, Dorset
  • October 20th 2017 in Grittleton, Wiltshire
  • December 8th 2017 Dorchester, Dorset
  • January 19th 2018 Dorchester, Dorset
  • February 6th 2018 in Totnes, Devon
  • February 26th 2018 in South Petherton, Somerset

Secret Life of Us

Telling the story of the struggles that parents and relatives of disabled children face every day, will help to build understanding and support among the public. If we do this, together we can make a real difference to the lives of all disabled children, young people and their families.

But, to build understanding, we need parents to tell us about their lives. We need parents to reveal the part of their lives that people do not see. Their Secret Life of Us.

Are you a parent or a relative of a disabled child? Share your story about what life is like for families with disabled children.

You can share your story:

Hear from some of the parents who have already shared their story. If you would like to write a blog or make a video, please email the Disabled Children’s partnership.

Thousands of people have already signed up to the campaign and supported on social media. We need to build on this and tell as many stories as possible, improving understanding and awareness.

Diversability Card – sign up now

The official discount card for people with disabilities in the UK. Providing exclusive and market leading discounts with your favourite brands, service and entertainment providers.

Click here to sign up (scroll down to the bottom of their webpage to fill out the form.)

The Diversability Card was created in response to the exclusion disabled shoppers face on a daily basis.

Research from the Department for Work and Pensions (DWP) has shown disabled people find shopping the most difficult experience for accessibility, followed by going to the cinema, theatre and concerts.

Research by Scope has found a shocking three quarters (75%) of disabled people and their families have left a shop or business because of poor disability awareness or understanding.

In addition to this, disabled people and their families face many extra costs. From expensive equipment to higher energy bills, disabled people and their families pay over the odds for essentials. These costs add up to an average of £550 a month and the annual cost of bringing up a disabled child is three times greater than that of bringing up a non-disabled child.

Anyone who receives one of the following benefits will be eligible:

  • Disability Living Allowance (DLA);
  • Attendance Allowance (AA);
  • Blind Persons Registration;
  • Armed Forces Independence Payment (AFIP).