Dr. Brown is deaf and blind and suffers from severe epilepsy which means she is often taken to hospital by ambulance. Dr. Brown is highly intelligent and has a PhD but, on virtually every admission, she was treated with rudeness and misunderstanding. No efforts were made to explain things or regularly observe or support her.

During one hospital stay, Dr. Brown was moved to a different ward without any warning. She was not shown where the toilet was so she lay in wet clothing for many hours.

Dr. Brown asked POhWER to help her raise her concerns with the hospital. When a meeting was requested by her advocate the response was ‘how can she have a meeting if she is deaf and blind?’.

Dr. Brown's advocate helped her to prepare a letter of complaint which specified her communication needs. The first response from the hospital completely ignored Dr. Brown’s request. When a meeting was arranged the hospital would not pay for an interpreter until Dr. Brown’s advocate quoted the Disability Discrimination Act.

With the support of her advocate, and after a nine month complaint process, the hospital worked with Dr. Brown to develop an About Me booklet which she now carries at all times. A copy is kept in A&E.

The problems are not completely over but Dr. Brown says things are improving.