Contribution from Sally Morgan:

Can I add the issue of loans e.g. insurance required before equipment will be sent home on loan (trust decision after the theft of a device and the family had no home contents insurance). We researched insurance companies that will insure single devices and got round it that way, plus a loan agreement.


CITCEN reply:

Great idea Sally. We will aim to have more information on this subject on here by July 2018.

Anyone who has specific information to contribute to this, please comment below or send an email via the contact page.


App Purchases


  • Unable to download apps through App store – NHS guidelines suggest only apps with a CE mark can be used in practice. [Some trusts enforce this – others don’t]

Possible solutions:

  • Access app store through the healthcare provider’s corporate account & VPP account
  • Ask whether your IT department use Push/pull or MDM (mobile device management) solutions which your service can tap into
  • Complete an incident/datix report stating that it wasn’t possible to provide appropriate therapy or AAC system due to prevented access
  • Make a risk management complaint stating that the patient is at risk of isolation & depression without access to a particular app
  • Request exceptional allowances from IT
  • Argue that the app is used under clinical supervision and following advice and collaboration with peers nationwide (e.g. members of CitCen have recommended it)
  • Documents from the Royal College of Physicians and NHS app development guidelines (see page 25) give information describing what types of apps may not require a CE mark

[Note: Step-by-step is the only therapy software we have come across which has a CE certificate]

Confidentiality & Tablet security


  • Personal photos & other confidential information stored on tablets

Potential solutions:

  • Disconnect the device from icloud so photos aren’t uploaded to the cloud and only remain on the device itself
  • Turn off geotagging so no-one can find out when/where photos were taken
  • Consult ICO (data protection) website for advice on managing personal data
  • Completely re-set the device after each loan so all personal data is deleted before the device is used by someone else
  • Ask the patient to complete a disclaimer

Wifi / Internet Access 1


  • Resistance from IT departments and managers to listen to your concerns and issues and act on them

 Possible solutions: 

  • Use quotes in conversations and correspondence from the relevant acts and legislation
  • Arrange meetings with IT where service users are also present to demonstrate why they need access to the technology and the impact for the service user of not having this access
  • Refer to outcome measures and the service’s inability to meet these outcomes without access to relevant technology
  • Arrange meetings where IT must use technology/ AAC systems to communicate to demonstrate the difficulties our service users face and how technology can positively support them
  • Remind IT that their end users are the SERVICE USERS, not staff and therefore you are leading a crusade on behalf of patients, not SLTs

Wifi / Internet Access 2

Issue:Laptop and Hands

  • No access to Skype (or other software) either due to it being blocked or not having installation permissions

Possible solutions: 

  • Try running software from a USB drive rather than downloading to the hardware (if you have permission to use a USB drive)
  • Identify with IT the exact reason you cannot use it to make arguing your case easier
  • Identify if it is used elsewhere (e.g. by managers) and then make a case for why your department also needs access
  • Complete an incident/risk report stating that it was impossible to provide appropriate therapy (or AAC system) or the patient is at risk of isolation & depression without access or there has been a breach of information governance if the patient & clinician have had to access the software from elsewhere
  • Ask for an alternative equivalent software (e.g. Web EX instead of Skype). A lot of healthcare providers have their own video conferencing software which can be used throughout the Trust for meetings and patient contact
  • Find out if your healthcare provider uses the ‘Patient Knows Best’ system which incorporates Skype as one of its functions

Wifi / Internet Access 3


  • No internet connection in the NHS Trust for non-networked devices
  • SLTs are taking devices home to program/update
  • Not enough bandwith on Guest Wifi

Possible solutions:

  • Explore whether it is possible to use the service’s Guest Wifi (designed for patient & visitor access). In some healthcare settings this is provided by hotel services although in most it is provided by the IT department.
  • Obtain charitable funding for WiFi connection (see “Find Funding” for a list of suggested funding sources & useful documentation for making funding requests)
  • Look into the possibility of the SLT department taking out a monthly subscription for their own, separate connection (this costs around £30/month)
  • Approach your IT department and request a separate access WiFi point in the SLT department (for some SLT departments, this has cost around £200 within their Trust network)
  • Request from the IT department an SSID (Service Set Identifier) to enable occasional downloads & upgrades if you don’t need regular/constant access
  • Ask the IT department about the possibility of setting up a group, segregated from but still part of the Trust network
  • If local IT don’t have the money to carry out the necessary work, try approaching the NHS technology fund (£1bn was made available to upgrade NHS networks nationwide)
  • Ask the IT department whether they provide 4G for their clinicians (e.g. for mobile working on ipads)
  • Liaise with other departments who need access (e.g. diabetes, psychology, ICU). We are stronger together –a number of services making the same demands are more likely to be successful than one, small service on its own
  • If there are no options within your healthcare setting, consider completing an incident report/Datix stating that it was impossible to provide appropriate therapy (or AAC system) due to a lack of internet access
  • If there are no options within your healthcare setting, consider completing a risk management complaint stating that the (named) patient is at risk of isolation & depression without access to the technology which requires internet access for the clinician to set it up and update it
  • If SLTs are taking technology home in order to set it up/update software, consider completing an incident/datix report since there has been a breach of information governance