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Helping patients and the public find high quality health information

Posted: 06/07/20

High quality health information is important to help people stay healthy and manage illnesses.

We all need information that we can trust, particularly during the coronavirus pandemic.

We also need good information to help us to look after our mental and physical health and wellbeing.

This is why we’re supporting Health Information Week 2020, and reminding people about the practical and accessible information on our website.

Our 800+ patient and carer information resources are clear, accurate, evidence-based, up-to-date, and easy to use.

Karen O’Rourke, Patient Information Centre Manager at CNTW, said: “With information so freely available online, it can be hard for people to find high quality, accurate and up to date information. Our guides have been written with the help of NHS clinical psychologists, service users, carers and other NHS professionals, so people can have confidence in what they are reading.”

Self-help guides

Our guides cover 23 different mental health topics, including anxiety, eating disorders, and sleeping problems.

They are available in different formats to make them accessible to as many people as possible. These include audio recordings, British Sign Language, and Easy Read. There’s also a free app which you can download to view them on. You can view all the guides and formats at www.cntw.nhs.uk/selfhelp.

We’re very pleased to say that many of our guides have been recognised by the British Medical Association’s prestigious Patient Information Awards.

Our website’s accessibility

To make the Trust’s website more accessible, we use a tool called ReciteMe. You’ll see the button in the top left-hand corner of any page on our website. Just click or tap it to launch the accessibility toolbar. This lets you adjust colour and contrast settings, make fonts larger, or read the page out loud. It can also translate web pages into different languages.

ReciteMe is also available on our self-help guides, allowing you to translate them into dozens of languages at the click of a button. Just head to www.cntw.nhs.uk/selfhelp, click on the leaflet you want to translate. In the pop-up window, click ‘leaflet’. Then click on ‘accessibility and translation.’ The flags icon on the toolbar at the top will let you select a language.

The Accessible Information Standard

Since 2016, along with all NHS organisations, we are required to follow the Accessible Information Standard. This is about making information easier to understand for everyone we care for. You can talk to a member of staff about what way is best to give you information in a way that you can understand. Read more about the Accessible Information Standard in our leaflet.

This animation from the charity Sense explains a bit more about the Accessible Information Standard and what it might mean for you:

Helpful books from your local library

Reading Well is a national scheme to help you understand and manage your health and wellbeing using helpful books. Ask your local public library for more information.

There’s a specific list of books for Mental Health. reading-well.org.uk/books/books-on-prescription/mental-health

Finding trustworthy information during the COVID-19 pandemic

Health Education England have collated information and resources on COVID-19 from trusted sources. This includes information for children and young people, older people and accessible formats.