People with learning disabilities (LD) face many health inequalities. They are 54 times more likely to die before the age of 50 than the general population, partly because they receive inadequate care. This stems from professionals not knowing how to support or communicate with them, and it’s an issue across the board from primary to secondary care. The result is unnecessary or prolonged hospital stays – and in some cases death.
“The single most important challenge faced by people with learning disabilities is communication. [Early prevention] can be as simple as observing how someone is walking when you take them to the cinema.”
The NHS outcomes framework lists the reduction of mortality rates for people with learning disabilities as a priority, but to date little action has been taken systematically to address current rates. That is why, with the help of our nurses and staff, we at social care organisation Turning Point developed a health toolkit in the form of easy-to-follow guidance available though our website.
Launched last year, this is now being adopted across our organisation and by other social care providers including Dimensions, Brandon Trust and Affinity Trust who have added it to their training programmes.
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