What makes information accessible within healthcare settings: insights from a learning disability context

Melody Terras, Sharon McGregor, Dominic Jarrett

Research output: Contribution to conferencePosterpeer-review


Objectives: Low health literacy contributes to health inequalities within society. This study explored the role of accessible information (AI) in promoting health literacy among people with a learning disability as a starting point to consider the issue in relation to other client groups. Specifically, what are current practices in relation to the production and use of health related AI by clinicians, carers, and people with learning disabilities?
Design: Exploratory study using mixed methods and random sampling. 102 clinicians completed a questionnaire; 35 clinicians participated in focus group discussions; and 10 people with learning disabilities, and 10 carers were interviewed regarding their experiences of using accessible health related information.
Methods: An online questionnaire examined the nature, range, important aspects and involvement in production of AI and was quantitatively analysed. Focus groups and semi-structured interviews tapped information seeking behaviour and the use of AI to support inclusion and healthcare decision making and were thematically analysed, informed by a framework approach.
Results: Questionnaire data demonstrated variable use and understanding of AI, as well as correlations between knowledge of AI and views regarding its relevance.
Qualitative data highlighted the crucial role of communication partners when using AI and the deficits in current NHS information provision.
Conclusions: AI is traditionally regarded as a niche resource, particularly relevant within learning disability services. Our results highlight its potential to support empowering partnerships with service users and thereby help address persistent health inequalities. AI should therefore be considered as the default form of information provision.
Original languageEnglish
Number of pages2
Publication statusPublished - 6 May 2015
EventBritish Psychological Society Annual Conference 2015 - Liverpool, United Kingdom
Duration: 5 May 20157 May 2015


ConferenceBritish Psychological Society Annual Conference 2015
Abbreviated titleBPS 15
Country/TerritoryUnited Kingdom


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