This report from the National Audit Office examines how the NHS in England and local authorities seek to improve the lives of the 129,000 people aged 18 to 64 who use local authority learning disability support services.
The report also assesses the setting up of the Transforming Care programme which aims to move some of the 2,500 people with a learning disability and/or autism out of mental health hospitals; and progress of the programme
The key questions of the report are:
• How much does the government spend on supporting people with a learning disability?
• Is support improving outcomes?
• Has the Department made progress with its programme to provide community services and reduce mental health hospital beds for people with a learning disability?
An improvement resource for learning disability services | NHS Improvement
This improvement resource is for community and inpatient learning disability services. It is designed to help commissioners and providers of NHS commissioned services to create, review and sustain safe and effective specialist health services within the resources available for people with a learning disability, who have a wide range of needs and varying levels of disability. Our ambition is to make a sustainable difference to the quality and consistency with which safe and therapeutic services for people with learning disabilities are delivered.
The funding will allow the creation of a range of housing and technology options which could include floor sensors to monitor for falls or finger-print technology to make access as easy as possible for residents. This £25 million fund builds on £20 million already earmarked by NHS England as part of its Transforming Care programme.
The main aims of the fund are to:
use new technologies to improve and adapt existing accommodation, enabling people to remain living independently
prevent unnecessary in-patient admissions
provide solutions for people who require urgent housing and are at risk of entering inappropriate services like hospital or residential care
encourage community-based solutions that promote independence and choice over housing
save money and resources – specially adapted housing reduces the need for costly hands-on care
My Health Guide is an app for iPads and Android tablets, as well as a web service, that puts adults with learning disabilities at the centre of their health care. The app enables people who struggle to communicate to have a voice, and to be empowered about their health care.
It lets adults with learning disabilities capture what’s important for them and helps them manage their health care. Families and friends can keep in touch using the web interface, and healthcare professionals can stay on top of what’s happening in the lives of learning-disabled adults.
The project is undergoing a 6-month trial in 2016 with 200 people at Humber NHS Foundation Trust.
The Shared Lives model is intended to support people who have needs which make it hard for them to live on their own, by carefully matching them with a carer to share their family and lives, giving care and support in the community.
Health Education England has set out the skills and competences required to deliver a series of generic service interventions to people with learning disabilities.
It contains a detailed description of the knowledge requirements of people delivering the interventions mapped to national occupational standards.
The Generic Service Interventions Pathway details a range of competences that support outcome-focused, person-centred care delivery. The tool is useful for those involved in developing the learning disabilities workforce in the health and care sectors. It will be of particular interest to managers in learning disabilities services, education providers, education commissioners and service commissioners.
The Mental Health Foundation has published Learning Disabilities: IAPT Positive Practice Guide. This guide is aimed at those who work in, commission, or refer to the Improving Access to Psychological Therapies (IAPT) services. It provides useful information regarding how best to support people with learning disabilities to access their local IAPT service, including practical examples of how some teams have made reasonable adjustments to achieve this.