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Deafblind (dual-sensory loss)

Deafblindness is a unique condition, within which every deafblind person is unique. The impact of deafblindness will vary from person to person and take into account the person as a whole. Many factors influence how a person with deafblindness experiences life.

There are 4 identified basic groups of people experiencing deafblindness:

  • those who are hearing and sight impaired from birth or early childhood
     
  • those blind from birth or early childhood who subsequently acquire a hearing loss that has a significant functional impact
     
  • those who are deaf from birth or early childhood who subsequently acquire a significant visual loss
     
  • those who acquire a hearing and sight impairment later in life that has a significant functional impact

 

Requesting a specialist deafblind assessment

If you have a combined hearing and visual loss that impacts your ability to access information, communication and mobility you should ask to be assessed in accordance with the deafblind guidance. The person carrying out your assessment should have had training on the following areas:

  • communication
     
  • one-to-one human contact
     
  • social interaction and emotional well-being
     
  • support with mobility
     
  • assistive technology
     
  • rehabilitation

  • assessing adults who are deafblind

Individuals who are deafblind experience both hearing and visual loss at varying degrees of severity. The impact of each sensory loss varies from individual to individual and it could be that their hearing loss has a greater impact, or it could be their visual loss.

For further information, please see these pages:


 

How can I get an assessment and registration?

The deafblind guidance states clearly that local authorities must identify, make contact with and keep a record of people who are deafblind in their area (including those who have multiple disabilities that include dual-sensory impairment).

You can contact Staffordshire Cares to request a deafblind assessment and deafblind registration.

Depending on the severity of your hearing and sight loss you can also request:


 

Further information

Please see these pages:

These web sites may also be helpful to you:

Sense

This is a national disability charity that supports people with complex communication needs, including those who are deafblind, to be understood, connected and valued, offering information, advice and support to deafblind people and their carers.

Deafblind UK

This is a national charity supporting people with sight and hearing loss. They enable them to live the lives they want and offer information, advice and support to deafblind people and their carers.

Deafblind Enablement

This is an organisation dedicated to enabling people who live with a sight and hearing loss to:

  • learn new skills
     
  • develop existing skills
     
  • gain access to their community and existing services with dignity, respect, control and choice

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