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Guidance for hospital staff treating deafblind children

Guidance has been published to help hospital staff care for children with multi-sensory impairments.

The guidance, developed by deafblind charity Sense, is intended to provide practical advice and support for healthcare professionals to provide the best possible care for children with both sight and hearing loss.

There are currently around 4,200 children in the UK with multi-sensory impairments, according to the charity.

It suggested healthcare professionals may lack confidence in caring for children with these needs, as there was no single cause of multi-sensory impairment and many of the conditions were extremely rare.

The document outlines causes of multi-sensory impairments and how it affects children. It also suggests a “personal passport” that any deafblind child can take with them into hospital and which contains background information on the child and how they like to communicate.

The work is being supported by Birmingham Children’s Hospital Foundation Trust.  

Raj Jhamat, one of the trust’s learning disability liaison nurse specialist, said: “At Birmingham Children’s Hospital we’re committed to doing all we can to make the hospital experience the best it can be for all our children and young people.

“We welcome the publication of this new guidance from Sense as it offers a much needed resource to support all staff in the health service to deliver the best care possible for children and young people with multi-sensory impairments.”

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