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In this Issue:

It's okay to ask! launch

DVD to be developed

New dental leaflet launched!

Update: entitlements work

Have your say!

New work plan announced

All change at HRIS!


On our website
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Go directly to the professional section of the website


Dates for your diary
11 March 2008

The Patient Information Forum's third annual conference 'Producing effective information for patients: the key issues' at Manchester Conference Centre.

24 - 25 June 2008

The NHS Scotland event 2008 'Better Health, Better Care', at the SECC in Glasgow.


HRIS eNewsletter

Feb 2008, Issue 4

Welcome to the fourth edition of our quarterly eNewsletter. In this, you can find out about the work we've been doing over the past few months.

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It's okay to ask! launch

Cover of It's okay to ask! leaflet.The Cabinet Secretary for Health and Wellbeing, Nicola Sturgeon, has unveiled a new leaflet for patients called 'It's okay to ask!' 

The leaflet contains a series of useful tips and questions a patient can ask during an appointment with a doctor or nurse, allowing patients to play an active part in their care and treatment.

We played a key role in the development of this leaflet, and its usefulness was tested in a pilot study in which 200 members of the public took part. The findings from the pilot were extremely positive, indicating that the leaflet reassured people that it is okay to ask questions during health care consultations.

The 'It's okay to ask!' leaflet will be made available from GP surgeries, pharmacies and hospitals across Scotland over the next few weeks, and you'll also be able to download it from our website.

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DVD to be developed

There are many people in Scotland for whom English is a second language. This includes:

  • some members of black and minority ethnic communities, including gypsy travellers
  • A8 migrants from Europe
  • deaf people, whose first language is British Sign Language, and
  • asylum seekers and refugees.

In some of these communities, particularly among older members of the black and ethnic minority community, there are also low levels of literacy in their own languages. For this reason, it has been suggested that it would be particularly useful to develop information resources about NHS services in an audio-visual format.

HRIS has been given funding by the Scottish Government Health Directorates to oversee the creation of a DVD to provide information about how NHS services work, and how to access those services. The work will be led by Smita Grant from the Minority Ethnic Health Inclusion Project (MEHIP) in NHS Lothian who has already done a lot of work consulting on the proposed content of the DVD. Smita will be seconded from NHS Lothian for one day a week.

It is hoped that the DVD will be used in community settings and by health promotion workers to encourage access to, and appropriate use of, NHS services. We are setting up a small steering group to advise on this piece of work. The resulting DVD will be suitable for use throughout Scotland. We hope to have a product ready for use by the end of March 2009.

If you would like to know more about this project, or have a suggestion for a snappy title(!), please contact Liz Macdonald.

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New dental leaflet launched!

Cover of dental registration leaflet.A new leaflet which explains how to register, and stay registered, with a dentist providing NHS services has been launched this month. The leaflet 'Registering with a dentist for NHS treatment' was produced by the Scottish Government with our help, and is currently being made available to NHS boards across Scotland.

This is the third in a series of leaflets that we have worked on with the Scottish Government to describe changes to primary care services across the NHS in Scotland. The other leaflets give information about the NHS minor ailment service, which is available from community pharmacies, and free NHS eye examinations, which are available in Scotland to UK residents.

All three leaflets are available to download from the patient information section of our website. We also hope you’ll find printed copies in your local pharmacy, optician, and dental surgery.

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Update: entitlements work

Following on from a request by the Scottish Government, we have been working on a series of leaflets to explain the circumstances under which particular groups of overseas visitors are entitled to NHS care in Scotland.

We've drafted leaflets for overseas students, migrant workers, refugees and asylum seekers, UK state pensioners living abroad, and former UK residents who are working abroad.

The Scottish Government recently revised their 'Overseas Visitors Shortened Guidance' - this includes a number of changes to the regulations, and we are updating our draft leaflets accordingly. Once we've done this, and the leaflets have been checked for legal accuracy, we will be asking relevant stakeholders for their views on the content. We will follow this with a series of focus groups to get feedback from members of the public.

We hope to have the entitlements leaflets approved by the Scottish Government by the end of September 2008. For more information on this work contact Brigitte.

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Have your say!

You may remember that we've been working on a leaflet for young people, encouraging them to speak out about the health care they've received from the NHS.

Over the past few weeks, we've carried out a consultation with relevant stakeholders on an initial draft of the leaflet, which is provisionally called 'Have your say!'. The majority of people we've spoken to have been positive about its content and layout. Once we have considered all the comments in depth and made any necessary changes, the next step will be to take this out for consultation with young people.

We've commissioned an experienced research consultant to carry out a series of focus groups with young people on the content, language and tone of the leaflet. And we're working with our designer and illustrator to design the draft leaflet in line with our other information for young people, so that we can also get some feedback on the layout and illustrations. We hope to begin the consultation in late March, and should receive the report on the findings from the focus groups in early May.

Watch this space for further news on this...

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New work plan announced

Want to know more about our planned work for the current year?

You can download our work plan for this year (2008-2009). This sets out the work we have started or plan to get started within the year, gives our reason for doing the work, what the target outputs are, and when we hope to deliver.

We are always happy to consider suggestions for other work we could take on. Please contact us with any ideas you have. 

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All change at HRIS!

Sarah is going on maternity leave on 14 March - we wish her all the very best in her new role as a mum. We're delighted to welcome Matthew Johnston as Sarah's replacement for the next 12 months - Matthew will be joining us on 10 March.

We’re sorry that Elaine is leaving the project at the end of this month to take up a post with a consultancy firm in Edinburgh.  We would like to thank Elaine for all her hard work and contribution to the project, and wish her the very best of luck in her new job. She will be missed. We hope to appoint Elaine’s replacement over the next few weeks - watch this space!

Finally, we'd like to extend a warm welcome to Alana Corrigan who joined the project as part-time administrator in December. Alana is in the office on Mondays, Tuesdays and Wednesdays. 

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Page last edited: 05 March 2008