General Hospital Care for People with Learning Disabilities is a comprehensive
resource for those health professionals in a general hospital setting who may
come into contact with people with learning disabilities. The book explores
the nature of learning disabilities and highlights specific health care needs.
It takes the reader through all the key factors in the healthcare process, through
pre-admission assessment, care planning, intervention and treatment and liaison
and discharge planning while highlighting key areas of healthcare need at each
The Department of Health, the National Health Service Executive and Mencap have all reported that people with learning disabilities have increased health needs to the general population, yet these needs are often poorly met and people experience difficulties in accessing appropriate services. This is a timely and accessible resource for healthcare professionals in need of a general introduction to caring for people with a learning disability.
- Relevant to the care of both children and adults with a learning disability
- Use of case studies to illustrate examples of situations explored in the main text
- Focuses on key areas of communication, understanding behavior and the often difficult area of consent
Table of Contents
1 Understanding Learning Disability.
- Definitions and causes of a learning disability.
- How to establish if your patient has a learning disability
- Perceptions and attitudes towards people with a learning disability
- Health needs of people with a learning disability.
- Family/carer’s needs.
- Introduction to person-centred approaches.
2 The Process of Health Care.
- The patient journey.
- Care planning and developing care pathways.
- Intervention and treatment.
- Liaison and discharge planning.
- What is communication?
- Models of communication – verbal and non-verbal .
- Developing relationships with people with a learning disability.
- Communicating with people with a learning disability.
- Tools to aid communication.
- Helping people with learning disabilities to make choices.
- Communicating with family and carers.
4 Understanding Behaviour.
- What do we mean when we say a person displays challenging behaviour?
- What could different behaviours mean?
- How hospital admission can affect individual behaviour and ways of overcoming this.
- How to respond to behaviour in health care situations.
- The use of behavioural indicators in the assessment of pain.
- Risk assessment.
- What do we mean by consent?
- Ethical decision making.
- The law on consent and capacity to consent (in England and Wales).
- Defining capacity.
- Obtaining consent.
- Advocacy and empowerment.
- Planning for future care.
- Emergency situations.
- What to do when consent is refused.
- Record keeping.
6 Ethical and Political Aspects of Care.
- Health care ethics and professional accountability.
- Safeguarding children and vulnerable adults.
- Values and beliefs.
- Political issues affecting service provision in both learning disability and secondary care services Interdisciplinary approaches and partnership working.
- Where do we go from here?
List of Useful Websites and Contacts.
Lynn Hannon is currently Head of Employment Services at East Lancashire PCT,
formerly Nurse Manager of the Specialist Community Nursing Service for people
with a learning disability, and a Florence Nightingale Scholar.
Julie Clift is Community Nurse Specialist Learning Disabilities/Acute Liaison at NHS East Lancashire Community Services and Lecturer Practitioner for the University of Cumbria.