A Right to Speak Supporting Individuals who use Alternative and Augmentative Communication

Guidance to be used by people who use Alternative and Augmentative Communication (AAC), their familes, strategic and operational heads within health boards, local authority social work and education departments and the voluntary sector

Summary of Recommendations

Key recommendations for NHS Boards, local authorities and other AAC service providers are summarised in the table below:

No. Recommendation Action (s) By Whom Delivered by
1 AAC services to demonstrate the effectiveness of AAC interventions by promoting the implementation of AAC research on specific, targeted and universal AAC interventions. Develop a National AAC Research Strategy. National services with input from Regional Networks/Centres September 2012
Evaluation of AAC related data from individual and population based intervention programmes All AAC services March 2015
2 National statistics on AAC to be gathered by relevant agencies to support future gathering of cost effectiveness data on AAC to ensure that AAC funding is sustained in the longer term. Implement use of nationally agreed data sets for AAC All NHS based AAC services April 2014
Implement use of appropriate outcome measures for all people who use AAC All AAC service providers December 2014
3 All AAC service providers should develop and implement a population based approach to the provision of support for people who require to use AAC equipment and services, ensuring that needs are recognised and responded to appropriately within the wider community. Development of national strategy to promote universal support for people who use AAC Lead by National AAC services (SCTCI* & CALL**) with input from Regional and local services Commence June 2012, conclude December 2012
Implementation of national strategies to promote universal support for people who use AAC. National, Regional and local services April 2013-April 2015
4 To ensure that people who are required to use AAC have access to appropriate levels of high quality specialist assessment and support delivered as locally as possible, Health Boards and local authorities should work in Partnership with each other and with National AAC services. National services to design a planned programme of activity to develop capacity and competencies of regional and local services. National Services April 2013
Establish multi agency regional AAC networks or centres providing support to local services and that are supported by National services. Local Partnerships (NHS & Local Authority and, where applicable, 3rd sector agencies) April 2013
National services to implement a programme to develop capacity and competencies of regional and local services. National Services, Regional Centres/Networks and local services April 2014
5 The Scottish Government to explore the feasibility of NHS-based National AAC services transferring to National Services Division, within NHS National Services Scotland, to support the monitoring of quality and effectiveness of AAC provision as well as to protect this valuable resource. Scottish Government will conduct an impact analysis on the transfer of National AAC services to the National Services Division Scottish Government April 2013
6 To ensure equitable, efficient and safe provision of AAC equipment for people who are required to use it, Health Boards and local authorities should work in Partnership with each other. Regional AAC centres/networks to have representation on local Community Equipment Management Groups. Regional AAC Networks/Centres June 2012 for existing regional centres/services June 2013 for newly established networks
Build on existing Partnerships to agree priorities, policies and processes for AAC equipment provision. Local PartnershipĖ† fundholders April 2014
7 National AAC services to provide strategic advice to appropriate agencies on AAC equipment to support planning, procurement and provision of AAC. Establish strategic links with Scottish Government Joint Improvement Team Workstreams for: (i) Equipment & Adaptations (ii) Telecare National AAC services Sep 2012
8 All AAC service providers to implement the use of Local AAC care pathways to ensure equitable and timeous provision of equipment and support for people who require to use AAC. Local AAC care pathways to be agreed with regional and national services Local AAC partnerships in collaboration with National services September 2013
Local quality indicators to be developed and monitored. National Services And Local Partnerships Scottish Government December 2013


Email: Peter Kelly

Back to top