NHS Fife provides accessible communication in a variety of formats including for people who are speakers of community languages, who require Easy Read versions, who speak BSL, read Braille or use Audio formats. NHS Fife SMS text service number 07805800005 is available for people who have a hearing or speech impairment. To find out more about accessible formats contact: [email protected] or phone 01592 729130.
NHS Fife has a responsibility to provide you with interpreting support whilst using healthcare services.
We provide interpreting services for patients who:
- Who speak a community language
- Are registered Deaf and Speak British Sign language
- Are registered deafblind
Our contact details are
NHS Fife and Fife Community Interpreting Service
Fife Community Interpreting Service provides face-to-face interpreting. The service will also help to provide information for patients and the public. They also hold and share translated COVID-19 materials in community languages.
To contact Fife Community Interpreting Service visit: Fife Community Language Interpreting
Language Line Solutions
Language Line Solutions provides Community Language and British Sign Language interpreting services via both video and audio methods (community languages).
Within NHS Fife, there is ‘Interpreter on Wheels’ devices at various sites. These host access to Language Line interpreting for patients also in video or audio.
Family Liaison Ipads
Wards across NHS Fife, have Family Liaison ipads which supports our patients to keep in contact with their families when family visiting is restricted. These provide a ‘virtual visiting’ opportunity. These also host access to Language Line interpreting services for both BSL and community languages. These devices connect to a face-to-face and audio community language interpreter and can be used if the patient would like to ask, talk about or feel more included in ward life during their stay, as well as for interpreting and translation purposes.
Justsign is a local British Sign language Interpreting company who work with NHS Fife to provide British Sign language interpretation.
Justsign Ltd can also relay information from NHS Fife. If you require help to communicate with us please contact NHS Fife as above or via text messaging or Donna Jewell by text on 07780443482 (24 hours) where a time will be arranged for communication.
Deaf Communication Service (DCS)
Fife Health and Social Care Partnership, hosts a service called the Deaf Communication Service (DCS). Deaf Communication Service provides advice and support about specialist equipment for Deaf BSL users, hard of hearing, deafened and Deafblind people at home and in the workplace. They also offer other services. For more details visit the Fife Council Deaf Communication Service.
DCS are working in partnership with NHS Fife to support patients and create accessible local information. Accessible information in BSL video links etc can be found on the Deaf Communication Service BSL YouTube channel.
If you are D/deaf, for more information send a text to 07984356580 or visit the Fife Council Deaf Communication Service.
You can also follow DCS on Facebook at facebook.com/FifeDCS and Twitter @FifeDCS.
NHS Fife provides a translation service for services and functions of the organisation where the patient requires the information in their own language. This is to help patients understand the messages about their care, self help, treatment and processes.
If you require information to be translated into another language, audio, BRAILLE or Large Print please contact the service, clinic, Doctor or send an email to [email protected].
The NHS Fife has produced a pocket size language identification patient leaflet. This leaflet has information in Fife's 12 community languages and can be used by patients to let staff know what they need to help them with communication at their appointments. This includes the patient’s spoken language, if they are a BSL speaker, have a hearing impairment or if another communication support is required. There is also a section asking staff to record the patient’s communication support needs on their patient record.
If you would like a copy of this leaflet contact .
NHS Fife SMS Text Service
NHS Fife SMS Text Service is a non-emergency service for patients who are Deaf, Hard of Hearing, unable to speak on the phone due to impairment or who require accessible communication support. This text service supports communication between patients and the hospital and clinics. This text service can also be used by NHS Fife staff to send information to patients. Text messages are checked regularly.
To register to use this service send a text message to 0780 5800005.
Information on how to contact the Emergency Services via text message here.
NHS Inform website is a Health and Social Care information service. To use this service visit NHS inform.
NHS Inform uses Browseloud which supports and helps people read or listen to the information on the NHS Inform website. Browseloud can be found at the top right-hand side of the screen.
For speakers of British Sign Language (BSL) visit - What is NHS Inform? BSL version.
NHS Inform has lots of information in other languages, Audio and Easyread versions. To find this information visit NHS Inform Translations.
Contact Scotland BSL
NHS 111 can help if you have an urgent medical problem and you’re not sure what to do. NHS 111 is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.
For more details on using NHS 111 service visit When to contact NHS 111.
To get help from NHS 111 call 111 or if you speak British Sign Language use the ContactSCOTLAND-BSL interpreting video relay service.
For more details on how to use this service go to - contact SCOTLAND BSL
Near Me Appointments
Near Me is a video consulting service that enables people to join online appointments. Interpreters can be brought into Near Me appointments. For more information visit NHS Fife Near Me Service or send email to [email protected]
Near Me accessible communication guides can be found below:
- Near Me Easy Read Guide
- Patient Guide to Using the Near Me Chat Facility
It's okay to ask
Realistic Medicine puts the person receiving health and care at the centre of decision-making and encourages a personalised approach to their care. Research shows only 1 in 3 patients prepare questions to ask at their appointment, and as a result may leave a consultation unclear on the importance and impact of taking a prescribed medication, or without a clear understanding of the options they have for shaping or managing their own healthcare. These effects are seen more clearly within minority groups broken down by ethnicity, sexuality, and gender identity.
The Chief Medical Officer’s Annual Report 2016-17 identified that ‘question prompts’ are an effective and inexpensive intervention which support patients in becoming more involved in consultations and their own healthcare. Our campaign aims to encourage patients to take time to consider what they need to know in advance of any upcoming appointment so they can feel confident and empowered in their healthcare plan.
What is the one thing we are saying?
“It’s OK to ask”
The questions we want people to consider are:
- What are the benefits of my treatment?
- What are the risks of my treatment?
- Are there other treatments I can try?
- What if I do nothing?
Read more here
Based in in Kirkcaldy, Fife, Seescape is a well-established charity working to improve the independence and quality of life of those who have sight impairment, their families and carers. Seescape believes that it is important to raise awareness of the needs of sight impaired people by changing attitudes and breaking down the barriers that prevent people living with sight impairment being full and active members of society.
Please continue to follow updates on our website www.seescape.org.uk or facebook /seescapefife and twitter /seescapefife
Fife Centre for Equalities
This organisation provides information and support. To contact Fife Centre for Equalities phone 01592 645310, Text message on 07800005834 or send email at [email protected]
For more information visit: Fife Centre for Equalities
Information for Gypsy/Travellers in Scotland can be found on the Gypsy/Travellers Scotland: Coronavirus Information – Health and Wellbeing Facebook group.
British Deaf Association
The British Deaf Association has information in BSL on COVID-19 on their website.