Quality Assurance of ‘Equipment only’ requests for individuals who meet the eligibility criteria for Specialised AAC services

It is recognised that there will be some instances where it won’t be necessary for commissioned Specialised AAC services in England to undertake an assessment of an individual meeting the eligibility criteria within the service specification D01 S/b and that funding may be sought for equipment provision only. These instances may include but are not exclusive to:

  • Referrals for individuals who are competent and experienced in the use of a communication aid, but whose existing equipment is malfunctioning frequently or has ceased to work.
  • Referrals from local AAC services and professionals with a significant level of AAC expertise and competency

When requests are received for funding equipment only, a Quality Assurance Framework has been developed for use by specialised AAC services to ensure that a comprehensive assessment has taken place in order to:

  • Ensure equipment recommendations are made that are appropriate to the needs of the individual
  • Ensure national equity of provision across all services in line with the Quality Standard for AAC services
  • Support the maintenance and development of local AAC services
  • Develop cost efficient and timely delivery of NHS funded services
  • Identify training needs within local AAC services

A joint Quality Assurance working party, supported by funding from a DfE Project and in partnership with Communication Matters and 1Voice, has developed a document which enables the report author/referrer to complete the assessment report template whilst ensuring that sufficient evidence is reflected in the documentation to enable specialised services to make an informed judgement on the robustness of the assessment process:

> Download the NHS Specialised AAC Service Equipment Request report template

Note: This template replaces the following draft documentation that has been used for this purpose to date:
– Specialised AAC service assessment report checklist – draft
– Assessment matrix – draft
– Mounting Electronic Assistive Technology to Wheelchairs: Assessment and Risk Tool – draft

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