Helping the blind to access health service

Hospital volunteers who have undergone training to help blind and partially sighted people while visiting Wansbeck General Hospital. GM023996

Hospital volunteers who have undergone training to help blind and partially sighted people while visiting Wansbeck General Hospital. GM023996

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A new initiative has been launched to help blind and partially-sighted patients and visitors at hospital.

In the first of its kind in the region, Guide Dogs and Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust have teamed up.

Volunteers at North Tyneside General Hospital have undergone ‘My Guide’ training to deliver guiding assistance to people with vision difficulties.

Lynn Hindhaugh, volunteer and charity development officer at the trust, said: “We are delighted to be able to work in partnership with Guide Dogs and have our volunteers undergo this training to help people with sight loss.

“Our volunteers provide a warm and friendly welcome to thousands of patients and visitors who come into our hospitals every year.”

Mike Dooley, from Guide Dogs, said: “Guide Dogs’ aim is to ensure that blind and partially-sighted people can enjoy the same freedom of movement as everyone else.

“We are delighted to be working with Northumbria Healthcare to ensure that the volunteers who welcome patients and visitors to hospitals are equipped to give the right kind of help to blind and partially-sighted people.”