Achieving increases in active support through practice leadership needs systematic development of skills and management focus says exploratory study

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Active support is about ensuring staff have working practices and organisational procedures to improve levels of participation and engagement in activities.

In her debut blog for the Learning Disabilities Elf, Louise Philips describes a study which set out to look at whether the quality of practice leadership was a factor in developing active support.

Louise also sets out an excellent breakdown of exactly what practice leadership is what managers need to do to ensure this framework for practice development is robust.

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Judgements about learning disability services quality based on snapshot experiences were not sufficient to understand service performance in Australian study

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What needs to be done to ensure quality services for adults with profound and multiple learning disabilities and how can organisations ensure that this is done consistently?

Here, Nick Burton describes the findings of an Australian study that uses observational methodology to look in great detail at what was happening for a number of people in small 24hr staffed houses for four to six people.

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Parenting skills support programme effective for some parents, but must be tailored to individual circumstances

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Parents of children with learning disability and/or autism in seeking support with parenting skills, may have need of support with specific skills relevant to supporting their child with a disability.

Here, Kate van Dooren looks at a ‘pragmatic non-randomised’ study which evaluated a parent programme called ‘Riding the Rapids’ to see what happened to those parents who followed the programme.

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New-easy read booklet on type 2 diabetes for people with learning disabilities

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People with learning disabilities may be at higher risk of developing type 2 diabetes, but often struggle with technical language and complicated explanations. Here we look at a new easy read booklet published as part of an ongoing research project into diabetes people with learning disabilities.

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Confidential Inquiry into premature deaths WeLD Nurses tweet chat with authors and the LD Elf

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Following our recent post on what has happened since the publication of the CIPOLD Confidential Inquiry report, we joined a tweet chat hosted by WeLDNurses with two of the report’s authors: Pauline Heslop and Matt Hoghton.

It was a really lively hour with some fantastic contributions. Here we present a summary of the comments with some links to information that was mentioned during the chat itself.

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Equipping family carers with better information about in-patient assessment and treatment for people with learning disabilities

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We know that access to accurate information is crucial if people are to make good decisions about the support they get from services. If someone with a learning disability is admitted to a hospital unit for assessment or treatment for a mental health issue or in response to behaviour that is challenging support services, this can be a particularly difficult and confusing time for all concerned.

In her debut blog, Alison Giraud-Saunders, along with co-author Angela Cole, describes a booklet that she co-authored with the involvement of family members which has lots of key information on the law and people’s rights.

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Using Thickness Indicator Model tubes help staff to accurately modify fluid consistency when supporting people with dysphagia

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When choking risk is identified for people with learning disabilities and fluid consistency modification is prescribed, it is critical that staff get the consistency right. Here we report on an efficacy study which looked at whether the use of Thickness Indicator Model tubes as a visual aid in training improved the efficacy of staff training.

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Evidence to guide treatment of dementia in people with learning disability may be lacking, but new areas of research might help

As people with learning disabilities are living longer, then they are also experiencing age related disorders such as dementia, where they have been shown to have a higher risk than the general population. Here we look at a review of the current state of knowledge which looks at a range of issues, from prevalence, assessment, treatment and future directions for research.

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Direct training with accessible materials improves knowledge of medication and capacity to consent in small group of adults with learning disabilities

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People with learning disabiilties may be on multiple medications and be on them for long periods of time. They need access to the best possible support to help them make decisions about their medications. In this post, we look at an action research study that offered training to people to see if it improved their knowledge and their capacity to consent.

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Lack of studies of pharmacological interventions among adults with autism and learning disability leave clinicians with little guidance

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1 in 100 adults experience autism worldwide but little research exists on autism in adults. Adults with autism and learning disability may have distinct needs, and in particular challenging behaviour, which may increase their social isolation and reduce access to quality health care.

In her debut blog, Kate van Dooren looks at a systematic review from Canadian researchers who examined the evidence for the use of medications for challenging behaviours in adults with autism and learning disability.

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