Category Archives: Blog

SDN’s is seeking members to contribute to the blog. If you have a burning issue or you want to share something with other members please contact us.

Wheel’s Wonderings contributor is written Ian Pugh a disabled teenager living In Shrewsbury.

shelton workhouse

Baggins Blog – All Things Mental Health

400 Years of Petitioning; Advocating; Campaigning For Better MentalHealth Services 

Lynda Jones

Did you know that as early as 1620 Patients in psychiatric hospitals were coming together to speak out with the petition of ‘ the Poor Distracted Folk of Bedlam.’ In 1845 the ‘Alleged Lunatics’ Friend Society’ was set up by John Perceval his aims were- Quote: “Protection of the British from unjust confinement on the grounds of Mental Disorder and the redress of Persons so confined.”John was himself a MH Service-user having witnessed the assassination of his Prime Minister father Robert Perceval when he was just 9 years old. John was the forerunner to MH Advocacy. 

Now let’s fast forward to 1960′s The brave new world of Civil Rights Movement, lots of social changes came about empowering people towards collective and individual Civil Rights. Now we move to 1970s the time that alliances were beginning to be made between patients and professionals giving MH Service -users a greater say in improving conditions on Wards. Charities such as MIND and National Schizophrenia Fellowship (now RETHINK) were formed. So moving on to 1980s Which saw formations of local Service-user Forums such as Nottingham Advocacy Group- NAG- aptly named because that is what we did! 

So the question I would like to ask you all is: 

After 400 years of hard work Campaigning; Advocating; Petitioning.

What have achieved towards this in the present day of 2014? 

A Mental health blog written for SDN by Lynda Jones

The Sun Has Got His Hat On!

The sun has finally arrived and what better time to get outside and try something new. From an amble around the Quarry to trying a new activity such as cycling there’s lots going on but often we just don’t know how to get started. 

If you currently do little or no physical activity or sport and who want to get fit and healthier then look no further.  Loughborough University have produced a series of guides to help.

Terri Graham, a research assistant in the Peter Harrison Centre for Disability Sport (PHC) at Loughborough University who compiled the resource, said:

“The aim of the guides is to improve peoples’ understanding of what they can do to improve their health and fitness as a disabled person.

“All of the disability-specific information they may normally have to spend hours searching for is now all in one place. It allows the reader to progress at their own pace through the guide, or they can simply dip into topics that are relevant to them.”

The guides are available in print format and are downloadable online at www.lboro.ac.uk/phc-toolkit Hard copies are also available so please give me a ring if you would like me to send you one.

In my role as disability lead at the County Sports Partnership I feel very lucky to work with some incredibly passionate people around the county who are striving to make sure sporting opportunities are available for all. So committed are these individuals that we now meet quarterly to share ideas and opportunities.  Even better than this is that we take it in turns to host the meetings which gives us an opportunity to see different parts of the county and the great work that is taking place within our community.  Our last meeting was held at Albrighton Trust.  Featured previously on the SDN website this is a MUST SEE.  Offering educational and recreational activities for disabled and SEN children and young people I couldn’t think of a better place to spend a morning discussing disability sport.  Through hardwork and determination Sandie and her small team have created a wonderfully inclusive setting.  This I’m happy to say is just one of many excellent facilities that Shropshire has to offer. 

And finally, hopefully you’ve already read about the SDN Gold Challenge.  I met with Ruby a number of weeks ago and she was bubbling with excitement about the challenge.  Sometimes we all need that little bit of extra motivation to get us going, whether its walking to the shops rather than taking the car or doing that thai chi class that we’ve always said we would do.  Last weekend as the sun was burning down on my shoulders as I struggled round the Shrewsbury half marathon I needed that little bit of extra motivation.  The crowds support was fantastic and the fact that I could get home and log 21kms as part of the SDN Gold Challengers  goal of achieving 2014km by the end of the year made it all the more worthwhile.  I encourage you to join the teams completing in the SDN Gold Challenge, every metre counts and together we can hopefully achieve our goal of raising £2014 for SDN. 

Helen Freedman

helen.freedman@energizestw.org.uk

01743 453497

SDN PRH 250-253

Raising Awareness of SDN at Telford PRH

Paula, Margaret & Ian do a sterling job at Princess Royal Hospital, Telford (PRH) raising awareness of SDN 

All of us on the Management Committee are pleased with the way our Outreach Officer for Telford, Ian Roberts is taking a lead on raising awareness of our work at the PRH. We had our second day there on Wednesday 3 June. 

Regrettably we were short of volunteers! Shropshire is a large county &it is our intention to raise awareness, raise funds and meet you where you are by having meetings etc across the county. Ideally SDN needs a group of volunteers in each area. At the moment we are building on this in Shrewsbury, Telford and Oswestry but it takes time and without your help, it can not be done so if you can help, , we would be grateful. Telford is no different to our awareness days at Morrisons Oswestry as we need at least 3 people volunteering for each hour. 

These days at PRH are very important to us. From early days at SDN we have had a saying  Well, we are working on it but still have a long way to go. So what do we do when we are at PRH? We talk to people if they want to talk with us, we share information by giving leaflets to those who want them, we meet many nice people & share many conversations and during that time we often use our signposting skills. The funding gained is an “add on” that we really appreciate. Few people complete membership forms on the day, but recent new memberships coming in via Telford people indicates they have come to us as a result of PRH awareness days. This shows SDN is needed there just the same as other places we go. 

So why are we taking this opportunity to increase our funds? Leaflets need to be replaced, printed newsletters need to be paid for but that is not all, we have insurance to pay, a website to maintain, a printer to run and more. Until now, we have had to take our information back and forth to Telford. Ian as Outreach Officer needs to keep a case with information “on hand” at Telford as He needs it for PRH regularly as well as other places/ ie ensuring membership forms, leaflets etc are put in public places in Telford. We can’t keep ferrying information to Telford and anyway they may be needed in both Shrewsbury and Telford. 

We are grateful to those who have helped at both our Telford days at PRH. Thank you to all. We need to ask you to support Ian your Outreach Officer at Telford.

 Thank you Ian, Margaret & Paula for all you are doing for Shropshire Disability Network in the Telford area, it is appreciated by all of us.

assistance dog 250-253

My Journey to get an Assistance Dog

My name is Sam, and this is my blog about my journey to get an assistance dog. I am twenty-two, a keen video gamer and writer, I have a disability, and six pet rats. 

assistance dog 2

The first thing people would say if I said this is either “Rats?!” (With a tone of voice ranging from eew – aww!). The second thing said would probably be a comment on my disability, ranging from “You don’t look disabled!”, “I would never have guessed!”, and, of course, the infamous awkwardness where people withdraw and treat me differently on learning of my disability status, to be fair, probably because they don’t know what to say. 

I have Asperger Syndrome, hand and feet deformities, and mental health conditions. I’m looking forward to the day when both pet rats and disability become a topic of conversation that isn’t controversial, and believe that will happen in my lifetime (For disability at least anyway! Although I hope it does for pet rats too!). 

But to get to that stage, better education on all types of disabilities needs to be provided to both abled and disabled people. 

I believe assistance dogs are a powerful tool not only for the people with disabilities they serve, but for abled people to some extent as well. As a disabled person, when I see an assistance dog out in public with its owner, be it a guide dog, a hearing dog, an autism assistance dog, I see hope. I see someone that’s receiving support that often councils are unable to give, family and friends could be unable to give (Not everyone has family or friends anyway), from an animal that has often been trained not only just for its owners condition, but for the specific owner. 

For an abled person, however, the dog represents something so much more. It represents the fact that disabled people have their own place in society, and are equals. It represents that yes, disabled people can struggle with some tasks, but given the right support they can flourish. And it represents a friendly (fluffy?) face that is a bridge to help make conversations just that little bit easier on both abled and disabled people. 

As a young adult with autism, I struggle with social interaction with people I don’t know. An assistance dog would act as a bridge for me – someone familiar to be my constant, so I can go out and use public transport such as trains and buses on my own, so I can ground my hands in its fur to soothe myself as I talk to strangers and acquaintances. At the thought of meeting new people I can already feel my stomach churning – an assistance dog would help alleviate that anxiety. 

They can be trained to either bark or paw at the owner’s leg as if they need the toilet if you make a hand signal at them – providing an excuse to get out of lessons, volunteering, training, or work if the owner is too anxious. It’s good to say autistic people can leave class at any time if needed, but it’s not always that easy. When I need to go, I need to go before I have a meltdown (Type of anxiety attack), not in five or ten minutes after the teacher has finished talking to me. 

Dogs can be trained to lie on you like a weighted blanket at night if they feel you shifting about a lot in the night – a method that reduces anxiety in autistic children and adults, without the internalised stigma of using a weighted blanket. Or, for an owner with anxieties in crowds, to ‘block’ between the owner and the crowds. 

So there we have some of my reasons behind needing an assistance dog. But how am I going to go about getting one? I’ve got to admit, it’s not going to be easy, but it’s something I need to do. There is one charity in the UK that trains up assistance dogs for autistic children – but only up to ten years old. There is also one that trains up assistance dogs for adults with mental health conditions, but their waiting list has been full and closed for a year or more. My current option I am looking into is a company in Ireland that trains assistance dogs. It costs £5000, plus 23% VAT (Which is not currently claimable back, but is probable that it will be after a court ruling in the future that the dogs are a necessary disability aid.) Then there is the cost of a ferry, and accommodation for a week for myself, my Mum and my support worker to go over to personalise the training of the dog. 

Overall, the cost is £7000, which will be my main barrier. I am hoping to do some fundraising, sell some things, possibly do some fundraising events such as bake sales, sponsoring, etc. It’s very early days, but I am hopeful that this is something that could make a real difference to my life and enable me to mostly live independently. 

I hope you enjoyed reading my blog, keep tuning in for another update soon! 

Thanks 

Sam

Beeline Britain 250-253

A Challenge with a Huge Difference

A Challenge with a Huge Difference-Is it possible to take a straight line route across Britain?

The Challenge called “Beeline Britain” is raising money for BLESMA. 

Beeline Britain Team 1

Lands End to John 0′Groats would be a challenge to many of us, but this Challenge is one that has never been attempted before! On May 18th a team of four started on there mission. It took numerous months of planning, training, overcoming obstacles for Beeline Britain to happen! So what is so different & why are they attempting this? 

Many of us have met Nick Beighton, now a retired Captain after having spent several years in the Royal Engineers. Nick came to our meeting last December & gave a very thought provoking & inspiring talk about His life before & after becoming a double, above knee amputee the result of stepping on an Improvised Explosive Device (IED) while on duty in 2009 in Helmand Province. After Nick’s talk, many of you commented on how inspiring He was, it even challenged some of us by making us look at our lives differently. So inspired, I know some of you are following the Beeline Britain journey of Face Book, but I have decided to share this with you as not all of us use Social Media. 

We all know to take the traditional route from Lands End to John 0′Groats is a big challenge that is used by many people as a way to raise money for charity. This challenge is so different as to complete Beeline Britain, the team will have to travel 1,100 km on some of the UK‘s most difficult terrain, it will involve 100 hours in a kayak, 34 hours on a bike and over 12 hours on foot. The journey will be completed by sea kayaking, hand bike/road bike as well a mountaineering! Places along the route include the Isle of Man, Burrow Head, Lossiemouth, Wick. plus a section of mountaineering over the Cairngorms plateaux, one of the most exposed mountain ranges in the UK. It really does sound impossible. 

Beeline Britan Team

Team Beeline Britain is made up of Tori James, aged 25. She became the youngest British woman and the first Welsh woman to climb to the summit of Mount Everest.

Adam Harmer another team member is a senior lecturer at Liverpool John Moores University and professional outdoor instructor at the UK’s National Mountain Centre, Plas-y-Brenin. RAF helicopter crewman, Ian O’Grady is another team member. Ian is 37 and originated from Oswestry. Then 32 year old Nick is the fourth team member. 

This challenge is being supported by The Endeavour Fund (created by The Royal Foundation of The Duke and Duchess of Cambridge and Prince Harry), and will raise money for BLESMA, the charity for limbless servicemen and women and their families.

They aim to raise £20,000 for BLESMA, the limbless veterans’ charity which supported Nick after his accident. Nick suffered serious multiple injuries and needed extensive rehabilitation. 

Last December Nick during His presentation told us “Having no legs is a driving factor behind everything I do. It is not an excuse to do nothing, it’s a reason to do more”.  The trickiest part of this challenge for Nick is the kayaking as usually this sport is so reliant on a persons legs to brace and balance the boat. To overcome this He designed a false bulkhead, built to support His stumps underneath, enabling them to be in the correct position to help stabilise the kayak. For cycling Nick will use a made to measure handbike enabling Him to reach speeds of 80mph, allowing him to cover 120km a day. That is not all because on the mountaineering part of the journey Nick will use special crutches that he bought from a company in America, He then adapted these in His own garage so that they will be able to cope with the load going through them. For Nick, his upper body strength is vital. 

This is one amazing challenge, they have already reached Linn of Dee in Aberdeen.(7th June 2014)  Throughout their training in preparing for this epic challenge many radio stations and newspapers carried out interviews. Along the way Beeline Britain support team have been out and about meeting locals and promoting BLESMA as well as encouraging the team as they pass through each area. 

Now Beeline Britain is on the final part of the challenge, we should be hearing new radio interviews and see new press releases however, if you want to see how the team are doing, even donate go to www.beelinebritain.com This website is updated daily and has a wealth of information to be read. 

Shropshire Disability Network wishes Nick & Beeline Britain all the best and when time allows, we would be pleased to have a blog from them about their epic  to share with our members. 

Photograph shows Tori James, Ian O’Grady, NickBeighton and Adam Harmer while on part of the journey via Isle of Man.

energize 250-253

Making Hearts Beat Faster – Guest Blog from Helen Freedman

“Over the last half century we have stopped moving, in our towns, workplaces, schools and cities – and how we get between them. This slow-down in activity has serious consequences to our health and economy; physical inactivity leads to 37,000 deaths per year in the UK more than from murder, suicide and accidents combined.” [1]
The latest document from the All Party Commission “Tackling Physical Inactivity – A Co-ordinated Approach” explores a long-term vision for the integration of physical activity into everybody’s everyday lives. Yet the stark reality is that disabled people are still half as likely to be active as non-disabled people and a recent report identifies that the majority of current sport and physical activity initiatives, aimed at disabled people, are failing to engage audiences effectively. helen

Energize, the County Sports Partnership shares a belief that opening up people’s horizons to the joy of sporting activity enables each and every person to find something that makes their heart beat faster. Therefore our challenge is to work with our local partners to make these opportunities available so that everybody can find something that appeals to them.  However a recent report by the English Federation of Disability Sport (EFDS) suggests that the reason for low participation is often because the opportunities and their promotion tend to focus on the audience’s disability or impairment and miss the emotional connection required to attract disabled people. So perhaps we need to start approaching things differently…….

Over the next couple of months I aim to give you a taster of sporting events and opportunities that are taking place in the county, but I also want to hear your ideas and I will try and answer any questions related to sport and physical activity.  

Earlier this year I attended the SDN meeting when Captain Nick Beighton, Ben Rowlings and Tony Lawrence spoke.  I felt incredibly inspired by all of the presentations and Energize are exciting that Nick has helped us out in inspiring young people through the School Games programme and Ben has previously won an Energize award in our Annual Awards ceremony.  However it was Tony, a qualified tai chi instructor who introduced himself as physically ‘at the other end of the spectrum’ that opened my eyes somewhat.  As the County Sports our vision is ‘to enable sport and physical activity to be a part of everybody’s everyday life’ and this needs to be across the whole spectrum.

Community Games[2] is just one example of an activity that focuses on involvement and enjoyment and links with that emotional connection I mentioned previously.  A recent community games event delivered to SEN children focusing on the principles of rugby such as teamwork, respect, discipline and sportsmanship in an enjoyable setting. This was a fantastic event enjoyed by all and demonstrated the role that sport can play in young people’s lives. 

I’ve also learned about an event that is planned in the Quarry to run alongside parkrun.  Grace Hough wrote about Shrewsbury parkrun in a previous ‘Your voice’. It’s been running (excuse the pun) in the Quarry for just over 6 months.  As someone mention last week “I don’t think you would get 300 people in the gym all at 9am on a Saturday morning”.  While parkrun is a fully inclusive event attracting a wide range of participants the Young Health Champions have identified the need to design a shorter course for people who want to do just 3k.  This event will capitalise on the buzz generated by park run, with participants starting at the same time and completing the DART (Disability Accessible Run Time). Hopefully the first event will take place on 19th July – watch this space!

To find out more information  about any of the items included in the article please email Helen.freedman@energizestw.org.uk




[1]                      All Party Commission on Tackling Physical Inactivity

[2]                      More information on organising a Community Games in Shropshire, Telford or Wrekin can be found on the Energize website. Click here to find out about organising a Community Games

 

svab small

See & Hear Shropshire 2014

SDN has a stand at this Wednesday’s See Hear Exhibition. You can see the details here: In the meantime here is the latest news update from Pauline Rose.

The latest on the See & Hear Event Programme for Wednesday 14th May 2014 10am to 4pm at Shrewsbury Sports Village.   

I am extremely grateful for the support of Shropshire and Telford CCG Commissioners whose attendance at the event will enable us to have the RNIB Eye Pod. 

Eye Pod

The RNIB Eye Pod sight loss simulator is coming to See and Hear Shropshire 2014, urging councillors, residents and public health professionals to make eye health a priority in their decision making. The futuristic pod has giant eyes connected to viewers that participants look through to experience conditions such as glaucoma and cataracts. We are working with local councils and clinical commissioning groups to improve access to treatments and raise awareness of the causes of avoidable sight loss.

Following on from last year’s theme we are promoting health and wellbeing, preventing avoidable sight loss.

There will be some new ideas and thought provoking activities, which will hopefully create another wonderful opportunity for everyone to take part in and assimilate what the day has to offer. 

I am very excited at what should be an amazing Event; both in terms of the publicity that the Exhibition has generated this time but also by the full and exhaustive programme for the day. 

I am sure that you will already be aware the day is a great opportunity for peer support, networking, gaining knowledge and sharing information with others and is important to everyone; it highlights how Healthy Lifestyles can prevent avoidable Sight Loss.  Recent studies show that smoking more than doubles the risk of developing Age-related macular degeneration. 

In light of this, it is vitally important to make people aware and encourage them to take advantage of the complimentary Eye Screening on offer by the Local Optical Committee. There will be Hearing screening by Audiology and carers’ assessments by People 2 People as well as other routine health checks and this time we have over 65 Exhibitors with stands.  

I would be pleased if you could encourage Social Workers and any of your contacts through the Care Services to attend as I am sure this would be hugely beneficial to both themselves and others who are taking part in the event. 

Sight and Sound Technology are offering workshops on the Respexi Home Tablet which is a new touchscreen tablet that provides a ‘window to the world’ by way of a simple interface for instant messaging, reminders, face-to-face video calls, photographs and radio.  Helping to create a safer home-living environment, enabling people to stay living in their own homes for longer, Respexi offers peace-of-mind to family, friends and carers. 

There will be the Guide Dogs’ sensory tunnel and obstacle course to experience life without sight and how a guide dog might help people, again to remain as independent as possible. 

The Braille Forum will give an understanding in the use of portable braille devices, working with Android, Iphones and Ipads.  Also there will be Seeing Skills sessions run by the Macular Society. 

We have full use of the Sports Village and there will also be Sports taster sessions, including the climbing wall and a fitness instructor will be available to talk to visitors, provide BMI results and fitness programmes. 

The Sports Village have also given us their assurance that the refreshments and facilities will be well organised and include a Hog Roast.  

Shropshire Public Health, include Shropshire Heart Age Testing and Healthy Shropshire will be including smoking cessation, physical activity, healthy eating, weight and alcohol management. 

The Event gets bigger and better each year so please have a look at the See and Hear Shropshire 2014 webpage for more information, which will be continually updated as the programme evolves link: http://Shropshire.gov.uk/see-and-hear-exhibition-2014/or telephone Pauline Rose on 01584 871420 

I hope that you will be able to attend and enjoy the day as I am sure it will evoke a great atmosphere and be a very pleasurable and rewarding experience. 

social welfare training 250-253

New Benefits Rates for Carers – Information from Social Welfare Training

Neil Arnott at Social Welfare Training has sent through their latest poster (download at the bottom of the page) and details of the latest changes to benefits.

  • State Retirement Pension is being uprated by 2.7% in line with the government’s “triple lock” commitment.
  • the Standard Minimum Guarantee in Pension Credit will be increased to give an equivalent to the cash increase in basic State Pension. The Savings Credit maximum is being reduced.
  • premiums paid to disabled people receiving working-age benefits, and to Employment and Support Allowance (ESA) claimants in the Support Group, will be uprated by the Consumer Prices Index (CPI) at 2.7%.
  • working-age benefits (main rates) including main elements of Universal Credit and HB personal allowances will be uprated by 1%.
  • The Carers Allowance earnings threshold(above which Carers Allowance is not payable) is increased from £100 to £102.
  • The following stay the same as last year- the Benefit Cap levels ,  childcare costs rates and the capital rules.  
  • Housing Benefit non dependent deductions have been increased by a large amount over the last 3 years and are increased again this year.   

                                                                                                                                                              2013/14  2014/15                                                                                                                      

 

 

 

Deductions                                                                                                              

 

 

Non-dependant deductions

 

 

Aged under 25 and on IS or JSA(IB) or ESA(IR) which does not include an amount for the support component or work-related activity component  

Nil

Nil

Aged 25 or over and on IS or JSA(IB), or aged 18 or over and not in remunerative work

13.60

14.15

In receipt of main phase ESA(IR)

13.60

14.15

In receipt of Pension Credit

Nil

Nil

Aged 18 or over and in remunerative work

 

 

- gross income less than £128:

13.60

14.15

- gross income not less than £128.00 but less than £188.00

31.25

32.45

- gross income not less than £188.00 but less than £245.00

42.90

44.55

- gross income not less than £245.00 but less than £326.00

70.20

72.95

- gross income not less than £326.00 but less than £406.00

79.95

83.05

- gross income not less than £406.00

87.75

91.15

For more details of this and for information about Social Welfare  click here Social Welfare Training 2014-15 A4 poster web version

HSIC 250-253

ALERT-You know there is a difference-between the Care.data Programme and NHS Summary Care Records!

We live in an ever changing world and much of this is down to the technology that we have. “Brilliant” I hear our avid supporters say as this is what makes it possible to bring us this website. That is just it, we can alert you to things brought to our attention! We have been alerted by our members that many people are unaware that the Care.data Programme that has recently been put on hold for 6 months is very different to the NHS Summary Care Records.

 

So what is a a Summary Care Record? A Summary Care Record is an electronic record which contains information about the medicines you take, allergies you suffer from and any bad reactions to medicines you have had etc etc.

Having this information stored in one place makes it easier for healthcare staff to treat you in an emergency, or when your GP practice is closed. This information can be made available wherever you are which has to be a good thing, after all it could be disasterious if you were taken ill while in another town or county to be given medication that is not compatable with those you may already be taking, all because you were unable or did not realise how important it could be to you. Frightening!  Summary Care Records are held electronically & securely and only accessible to  healthcare staff involved in your care and they have to be accessed via Smartcard with a chip and pass code (like a bank card and PIN). You can find out if your records are held on this system. To read more visit-                            http://www.nhscarerecords.co.uk/

 

But many people are saying “I thought this is what the Care.data programme was all about” Be warned think again. The good news is the programme has been put on hold for 6 months. This has to be a plus that a programme that was supposed to be going “live” shortly, when only 29% of the poplulation received a poorly produced leaflet informing them of government plans for this. However,It must also be said any scheme headed up “Better information means better care” has to be a move in the right direction!

Clearly reading into both, this is a very different / new computer database from that described above and there has been much in the press and TV in the last two weeks about the scheme. The reason for this is, it is not just about sharing information between those who care for you but others as well and that raises many concerns and issues for many of people. There has to be merit in an NHS system that wants to know about age groups etc affected by heart attacks, stroke, eye conditions… in order to advance but when it comes down to information being shared between pharmaceutical companies and the possible selling on of data to others enabling access to your information, then caution is  paramount. Will this result in “cold calling” to sell insurances for health and care packages etc.

To get out of the Care.data programme you must “opt out”. Many GP practices have produced a leaflet and form to sign giving you the opportunity to “opt out” of the system but read the wording carefully! Reportings to us give evidence that GP practices are producing different wording ie look and see -does yours use the wording “all “ “personal” “confidential” which your medical records are. Consider inserting these words if you think it is important. Remember, if you decide to opt out now, you can opt back in at a later date if the way the scheme scheduled to operate is changed and you are happy with it- so why alert you to this? Well the system as it stands does not ask for your name but it does ask for nhs number, gender, age group and postcode. That surely must mean, it would not take rocket science for you to be identified. If you want to find out more have a read of these http://www.independent.co.uk/life-style/health-and-families/health-news/doctors-raise-fears-over-sharing-nhs-patient-records-9133807.html

www.nhs.uk/caredata

The decision is yours but don’t expect your Gp to ask do you want to be in it or not, after all money could be realised by selling on your data at some point. SDN is not going to influence you, our members either way but feel it is important enough for us to alert you! The decision is yours. Look out for further updates.

sign language ireland 250-253

A New App for Sign Language Alphabet-Share it with others please

Do you have an Andriod phone? If  so how about trying a new app that has been created by David Mullis from Dundalk IT College for use with android phones, for the sign language alphabet.

David Mullis

It is free in google play under: Sign Language Alphabet Ireland. 

David asks will you please encourage people to use the app but also to let him know of ways to improve it with a view to making similar apps. This innovation is helpful to all of us whether we have sensory impairment or not because it means we can all communicate with each other. So go on try it. What do you think? How did you get on with it? 

It helps by showing you the hand sign used in the sign alphabet. So if you tap a letter you will see a picture of that sign. Tap in a word and you will be shown how to spell that word in sign! 

Since producing this app David has already received some feedback enabling him to update his first version. Any SDN members willing to help David, help others, please do? It would be great if you could. 

Click on this link to find out how it work

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=com.davidmullis.signlanguagealphabet&hl=en