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Oxford University Hospitals NHS Foundation Trust
Craniofacial

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Communication Passport Project

The Communication Passport Project was launched in 2017 by the Oxford Craniofacial Unit Speech and Language Therapy team

We received a generous grant from the Wallace and Gromit Children's Charity which made this project possible.

Most children who have an operation at Oxford Craniofacial Unit are given a personalised Communication Passport. Communication Passports are a practical and person-centred way of supporting children who cannot easily speak for themselves, by pulling complex information together and presenting it in an easy-to-follow format.

Passports aim to:

  • present the child positively as an individual, not as a set of 'problems' or disabilities;
  • provide a place for the child's own views and preferences to be recorded and drawn to the attention of others;
  • reflect the child's unique character, sense of humour etc.;
  • describe the child's most effective means of communication and how others can best communicate with, and support the person;
  • draw together information from past and present, and from different contexts, to help staff and conversation partners understand the person and have successful interactions;
  • place equal value on the views of all who know the child well, as well as the views of the specialist professionals.

Before having an operation, children come to the hospital and see many members of the multidisciplinary team for an update on their communication, development, hearing and eye health.

We ask parents if there is anything they particularly want us to know about how to best care for their child.

If the child is old enough, we ask them if there is anything that they would like the doctors and nurses to know about how best to look after them.

The Oxford Craniofacial Unit Speech and Language Therapy team then take the information from the assessments, parents and child, and make a personalised full-colour communication passport that follows the child on their journey in the hospital.

Change package

If you would like more information about Communication Passports, or to find out how you can implement these in your own hospital, please see our change package at the link below:

Communication Passports for Children Undergoing Transcranial Surgery via the Oxford Craniofacial Unit (pdf, 572 KB)