Sunday, 25 November 2018

From the Fringe.

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With access to mental health support issues. ATR is not convinced some deaf want support at least not the ones who DON'T need it anyway, but who are quite happy to demand types of access that make help more difficult to apply for their more vulnerable peers.

In the UK We had one group of cultural deaf insisting medical staff not only sign but have awareness of deaf culture via Milan etc, which I think is just making for more issues with deaf mental health.  

Your average deafie on the street knows or cares little about the 'oral-sign wars', of  the1880s they live in the now.  I cannot help thinking culture is beginning to be entirely negative for many deaf people. E.G. Where the UK rejected Deafhood as a mish-mash of incoherent ramblings, and the 20thc version of the Emporers New Clothes written in some obscure dialect, the USA grabbed it with both hands and sold their own version e.g. and they still cannot make it comprehensible.   

What is important is effective communication between Dr and Patient, everything else is a red herring.  E.G. To see able deaf with skills to communicate other than sign and/or able to bridge areas of communication to turn around and then stop doing that in the name of culture and demand sign only cultural only approaches, I think is undermining access for everyone else as systems attempt to accommodate them, mostly they can't.  It is as if these Deaf are determined to be martyrs and for a cause they can't define.

Meanwhile what constitutes mental health is the deaf seems to be up for grabs, because deaf are confused about what communication skills they need as opposed to listening to those who tell them to state a preference instead, regardless if practicable or viable.  More martyrs emerge.

The UK has many mental health support areas, most of which the deaf do not attempt to utilise, but instead demand 'conditions' from the medical staff diagnosing them that has little to do with mental health or communication but something else entirely, with all sorts of demands for 'specialisations' in deaf awareness that appear to change via who is asking for it.  In response, health professionals are opposing translators in the room via some vague interpretation of the Hippocratic oath leaving deaf patients unable to communicate or the Consultant. Still, there is always culture!!!

The Deaf world has no unity of approach on their own 'chosen/preferential' communication approaches, no signing normal standards and a determined opposition to compromise anywhere.  Increasing demands for Deaf-Only systems, run on 'cultural' grounds is chaotic, not really supported, and random too.  Most is driven by financial advantage and individual Kudos, and not practicalities.

What we see are hearing welfare/support workers standing IN for a Deaf patient because the signing is too ineffective to effectively diagnose.  This has meant many deaf patients being sectioned, drugged out of it, and isolated from family support too.  Cultural adherents need to start concentrating on effective communication, not own versions of it. 


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