We define specialist advice as “a person or organisation regarded as knowledgeable or authoritative making recommendations concerning future action.”
Specialist advice includes these activities:
- Benefits advice
- Other financial advice
- Advice on how to apply for health and social care services
- Care navigation or case work
- Recommending services such as clinical or therapeutic services that are not regulated
We don’t expect your MS Support service to offer specialist advice and you must not do so on our behalf. If a person needs specialist advice, we want you to signpost to a suitable service provider, or contact our MS Helpline for support.
Support Volunteer Training
Local contacts template
We want all groups that handle money and deliver services and activities to maintain a list of local MS services to signpost to when dealing with information enquiries. We have developed a Local contacts template to help you do this.
- Download our Local contacts template
MS Helpline signposting list
If your group offers MS Support, your Lead/Support Volunteers are trained to use our signposting criteria and have access to the list of UK-wide and nation-specific organisations that our MS Helpline signposts to.
- See our MS Helpline signposting list
Our signposting criteria
- Trustworthy - Is their advice objective and information based?
- Accurate - Are they evidence based and specialists in their field?
- Up to date - Are review dates available on their website?
- Relevant - Do they offer what is needed?
- Professional - Is their information accessible and easy to use?
Some groups develop a partnership with a local organisation that provides specialist advice to meet local need.
An advice partnership usually involves a group funding a qualified Citizens Advice Bureau worker (or similar) to provide specialist advice for an agreed number of hours or days per week or month. This enables people affected by MS to access the support they need quickly and at a location that is accessible to them.
Your group may decide to develop an advice partnership instead of, or as well as offering MS Support. This decision should always be based on what is needed locally and your available resources.
- Find out more about Developing services and activities
You support people affected by MS, but who supports you?
We do - with practical, emotional and peer support options, access to our specialist signposting database, regular knowledge updates and key MS Support resources.
- Find out how we Support your team
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