If you could communicate your health needs you would get the best solution to your problems, therefore effective communication in Health settings is absolutely essential. Techniques to aid communication and understanding by using visual support & cues have been used in various settings including Speech and Language Therapy and Education for many years now. They are utilised as a support mechanism and indeed an access point for service users and consequently, provide a means of empowering the user as well as engendering independence, self-confidence and self-esteem. Outside these environments, however, many of these crucial techniques have been overlooked, primarily due to a lack of knowledge of their existence and a lack of tailored resources to meet specific client needs.
In this presentation, I aim to demonstrate the powerful effect of using visual support, in the form of symbols, to improve the service user experience in a variety of sectors, particularly within medical healthcare, mental health settings and custodial / social justice environments.