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What to look for in a supplier

All supplier members of Communication Matters subscribe to the Communication Matters Code of Conduct.

The Code of Conduct is not a legal document but sets the standard for good commercial practice. Customers are entitled to expect the same standard of professional integrity from suppliers who are not currently members of Communication Matters.

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The British Healthcare Trades Association (BHTA)

The British Healthcare Trades Association (BHTA), founded in 1917, is the UK's oldest and largest healthcare association. The association has almost 500 member companies employing over 17,000 people who make or sell healthcare and assistive technology products that help people live more independently.

Members are organised by "sectors" that cover the range or products they make and/or supply, such as wheelchairs, stairlifts, prosthetics etc. One of these sectors is AAC and several suppliers, who are members of Communication Matters, are also members of the BHTA.

BHTA Code of Practice

What makes the membership of the BHTA different to that of Communication Matters is the BHTA Code of Practice, which is the only one in the healthcare sector overseen by the Trading Standards Institute (TSI) and is therefore binding on the member companies. All BHTA members sign up to the Code, demonstrating their commitment to high levels of customer care that go above and beyond their legal obligations, leading to customer confidence.

Because of the Code of Practice, the BHTA operates an independent complaints procedure which means that customers, buying from a BHTA member who have a problem that cannot be resolved directly with the supplier, can contact the BHTA who will act as arbitrator.

To find out whether an AAC supplier is a member of BHTA or not either check on the list of member companies on the BHTA website (www.bhta.net) or the suppliers own website.