Funded by Public Health Wales.
The Vaccination Information Project is now coming to an end. We are pleased to see Public Health Wales launch 2 new accessible resources that will support people with a learning disability to get their vaccines.
The resources are based on what we learned during our project. They consist of a video and Easy Read guide, split into 2 parts.
We chose to create a video, supported by an Easy Read guide because people told us getting information in this way was more accessible.
The video resource shows a positive social story of a person with a learning disability, supported by a carer, going for their yearly flu vaccine. The aim of the video is to show people that getting a vaccine is not a scary process, and to highlight the support that is available.
Addressing concerns and barriers to vaccination
The Easy Read guide is split into 2 parts. Part 1 explains what vaccines are, how they work and why they are important. It includes information like what ingredients are in vaccines, allergies, and common side effects.
Part 2 is about the experience of getting a vaccine. It includes information about consent, support to go to your appointment, reasonable adjustments, and how to look after yourself after a vaccine.
We created these resources to address some common concerns and barriers to vaccination that people told us about during the project. Many people that took part in the project told us they are scared of getting vaccinated, have a fear of needles and worry about getting sick after a vaccine.
Most people that took part in the project said they do not feel they have the information needed to make informed decisions about vaccines. They felt it was important to have positive messaging around vaccines, so people did not get too worried about them.
We hope that the new resources support people with a learning disability to make informed choices about getting their vaccines and help to ease some of the worries and fear people can feel.
We are running workshops at Learning Disability Wales’ annual conference in November 2023 to share the resources and tell people more about what we learned.
Public Health Wales will use the resources as part of their yearly flu vaccine campaigns and will make the resources available for all healthcare professionals to use as needed. The resources will be available all year round on the Public Health Wales website.
Next, we would like to see a resource for staff working in healthcare settings, from receptionists at GP practices to learning disability nurses, to inform them about reasonable adjustments and supporting people with a learning disability at all healthcare appointments. Lots of people spoke about the way they were treated during health appointments, and having the right support in place is a huge part of whether people go to their health appointments or not.
Please contact us if you want to know more about any of our Easy Read services: firstname.lastname@example.org.
We have written a report about what we found out during the Vaccination Information Project engagement work. You can read more about what we did on this webpage below.
Thank you to everyone that told us about their experiences and feelings about vaccination.
A lot of people spoke to us about COVID-19 and lockdown. This was a difficult time for a lot of people with a learning disability.
Many people feel anxious about going to healthcare appointments and getting vaccines. A lot of people told us they were worried about being treated roughly, and that they were worried about the pain of having an injection and possible side effects, like having a sore arm and feeling unwell after vaccines.
Many people did not get person centred care. They do not get reasonable adjustments, like extra time for appointments, information in a way they can understand and having a distraction whilst getting an injection.
You can read more about what we learned in the project report. This will be available soon.
You can see the participant information sheets, consent forms, equality monitoring forms and the easy read survey that we used for this project by clicking on the button below:
What happens next?
We are working with people with a learning disability and Public Health Wales to create a video showing a positive vaccine experience, an easy read guide to vaccination and a resource for primary care staff, carers and support workers with top tips for supporting people with a learning disability to get a vaccine.
We will update this webpage when the resources are available.
About this work
We are working with Public Health Wales to improve the information people with a learning disability receive about vaccines. So they can make informed choices about vaccination and having vaccines.
Vaccination is the way we give someone a vaccine to protect them from specific diseases.
A vaccine is a medicine that helps your body fight diseases to keep you safe from getting very ill.
To make this happen we are working on a new project with 2 teams at Public Health Wales – the Vaccine Preventable Disease Programme and the Learning Disability Team at Improvement Cymru. The project will:
- find out what people with a learning disability think about vaccination and having vaccines
- and use what we learn to create information that helps people with a learning disability make informed choices about vaccines.
This project will look at childhood vaccines, vaccines given at certain ages, the flu vaccine and COVID-19 vaccine.
Alongside this Public Health Wales has organised 2 surveys, which are available until Friday 24 February:
- A survey for carers of people with a learning disability.
- A survey for organisations which support people with a learning disability.
Aims of this project
We want to find out:
- What people know and think about vaccines.
- If people worry about getting vaccines and if so, what makes them worried.
- What helps people to get their vaccines.
- What information is available for people about vaccines.
- Where people get their information from.
- How people would prefer to get information about vaccines.
We will use what we have learned to make accessible information about vaccines to help people with a learning disability make informed decisions.
What we did
Throughout February and March 2023, we:
- Held 4 focus groups for people with a learning disability in person.
- Held 2 online focus groups for people with a learning disability that will happen online.
- Interviewed family and unpaid carers, and people who work with people with a learning disability.
- Asked people with a learning disability to fill in an easy read survey online.
Project steering group
We have a project steering group that will oversee the work of this project. The steering group is made up of:
- People with a learning disability
- Staff from Learning Disability Wales and Public Health Wales
- People who do research
- People who work with people with a learning disability
- People with different life experiences, from different backgrounds.
What we will do with our findings
- We will work with our advice group to agree what we found out and write a report about what we learned.
- We will identify what type of information people with a learning disability prefer. For example, posters, videos, or leaflets.
- We will then work with people with a learning disability to create information resources to help them make informed decisions about vaccines.
For any further information please contact Laura Griffiths, Learning Disability Wales:
Phone: 029 2068 1160
For information about vaccines in Wales, please visit the Public Health Wales website.