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Southend University Hospital receives a learning disabilities grant

06 March 2013

Health Care

Making services more accessible to those with learning disabilities has been given a boost at Southend University Hospital thanks to a £5,000 grant to produce an information video.

The video will help patients who have learning disabilities familiarise themselves with the hospital before they come in to have treatment, making them better able to understand what the experience will be like and in turn reassuring those who may be anxious.

The Rix Thompson Rothenberg (RTR) foundation awarded the grant because they were impressed with the hospital's continuing approach to meeting the needs of people with learning disabilities.

Fred Heddell, non-executive director of the hospital and a trustee of the RTR foundation presented the £5000 cheque to health access champion Matthew Riches at a recent meeting of the hospital's learning disabilities committee.

Mr Heddell said: "The hospital has a real desire to make sure patients with learning disabilities receive the same high quality treatment as every other patient."

Learning disabilities lead nurse Sarah Haines believes the money will make a huge difference.

She said: "We are very grateful for this large donation. We look forward to improving our methods of communicating with people with learning disabilities and sharing information about our services in an accessible manner."

The RTR foundation was set up by comic actor Lord Brian Rix in honour of his daughter who had a learning disability and he has since become an influential campaigner for people with learning disabilities.