Tool 1 : A person may have an ABI 

All staff in services, especially those on reception or information and referral workers need to be open to the possibility of a person having an ABI.


Useful principles to underpin your interactions with people are:

  • Treat people with respect
  • Be non-judgemental
  • Be open
  • Listen
  • Be patient


What do you notice?

  • A person having difficulty finding words
  • A person regularly forgetting appointments
  • A person getting agitated when things aren't going right
  • A person slurring their words not speaking properly.


Ask the person's permission to ring a family member, friend, or key contact (to ask for more information)
Use direct questions e.g.

  • Have you got an acquired brain injury?
  • Do you have difficulty finding the right words?
  • Do you have a memory problem?

Question your assumptions

  • Not keeping appointments - intentionally OR could there be a memory problem
  • Difficulty finding words - not understanding what's said - OR understanding what's said but has difficulty finding the right words to verbalise an answer.
  • Getting agitated - an irritable client OR - a person with an ABI who gets stressed when routine breaks down
  • If someone regularly forgets appointments - could they have a memory problem?