A BLIND pensioner is taking legal action against a hospitals trust after he said it repeatedly failed to send him communication in a format he could read.

Michael Tupper, 72, from Clitheroe lives alone and is registered severely sight impaired and is unable to read standard print.

Mr Tupper requires correspondence to be delivered in 18pt font which he reads with a magnifier.

Despite this, he said East Lancashire Hospitals Trust – including its ophthalmology department – routinely sends him inaccessible letters and leaflets – with Mr Tupper receiving 14 in the last year alone.

Amongst the correspondence Mr Tupper has been unable to read are important appointment details, questionnaires and confidential health information that he has occasionally needed to have a neighbour read for him.

He is now working with the charity Royal National Institute of Blind People (RNIB) to take legal action, as he said his treatment amounted to discrimination.

He said: “I’m totally frustrated and angered by the whole situation.

"I tell staff at the hospitals again and again that I need large print, and I know it’s recorded on my file, but they keep sending me small print that I can’t read. It’s been going on for years.

"I will try and read it, but it takes so long with a small hand-held magnifier – it can take me hours, and I’m worried that I could misread it and miss an appointment."

All hospital trusts should adhere to the Equality Act 2010.

They have also been required to follow the Accessible Information Standard since 2016, which ensures that people with a disability, impairment or sensory loss are provided with information they can easily read or understand.

Samantha Fothergill, legal advisor at RNIB, claimed the treatment Mr Tupper has received from the trust is unacceptable and unlawful.

She added: "We are now hoping that this case will force real change and ensure that he can read the important health information sent to him by his doctors.”

Professor Damian Riley, acting chief executive at the trust, said it takes very seriously any issues or complaints raised about the service it provides to patients.

He said: “As one of the first NHS trusts in England to implement the Accessible Information Standard for the benefit of our patients, we work hard to provide people with visual and/or hearing impairments or learning disabilities the information they require in the format they request.

"We are unable to comment further at this time due to ongoing legal proceedings, " he added.