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Specialist Disability Service

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This service specialises in assessing for and then providing equipment that will improve the level of autonomy and/or reduce the stress on carers of people with highly complex disability. Examples of our services include:

  • Alternative and Augmentative Communication (communication aids)
  • Environmental control service (Oxfordshire)
  • Computer access service
  • 24 hour management of posture in severe physical disabilities
  • Mobile arm support services
  • Baby care advice for people with physical disability
  • Clothing and adaptations

For further information about these services, please see Specialist Disability Service patient information leaflets.

Much of the equipment recommended needs to be made specifically for an individual and often agreement has to be obtained to pay for the equipment. This means there can be a significant delay between initial referral and final provision of equipment.

Responsibility for the continuing monitoring and maintenance of equipment remains with the local services.

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The team

The service has a multidisciplinary team approach, with the team including:

  • occupational therapists
  • physiotherapists
  • speech and language therapist
  • nurse
  • technical instructors
  • clinical scientists
  • rehabilitation engineers

For patients coming from outside Oxfordshire, there is close liaison with local services because ongoing monitoring of equipment needs to be undertaken by the local service.

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The service is located on the ground floor of OCE (see how to find us), although many patients are seen in their own homes.

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Referrals and funding

Most patients referred to this service are already under the care of a local rehabilitation specialist service who have identified the need for further expert assessment in relation to particular problems or potential particular solutions.

Some of this is funded through national specialist commissioning, and the service covers most of the south of England.

Before any action is taken on a referral, we always need to establish that there is suitable funding available. Although this is often quick and easy, for a significant number of referrals this may take some time.

How to make a referral

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