Workforce update for 
 services that support people 
 with a learning disability 
 and/or autistic people 

Welcome to this workforce development update for adult social care services that support people with a learning disability and/or autistic people.

It shares the latest news, resources, events and funding opportunities from Skills for Care and partners, and you can find previous newsletters here.
 News from Skills for Care 

Oliver McGowen Mandatory Training in Learning Disability and Autism
Skills for Care, Health Education England and Department for Health and Social Care have announced the partners for the Oliver McGowen Mandatory Training in Learning Disability and Autism. Partnerships led by British Institute of Learning Disabilities (BILD), Gloucestershire Health and Care NHS Foundation Trust, Royal Mencap Society/National Autistic Society and Pathways Associates CIC have all been selected as trial partners and the National Development Team for inclusion have been selected as the evaluation partner. The announcement was supported by statements from Paula, Mark Radford, Chief Nurse, Heath Education England and Minister for Care Helen Whately.

More information can be found on the Skills for Care website.
Reports into the health inequalities and deaths of people with learning disabilities
The University of Bristol’s fourth annual Learning Disability Mortality Review (LeDeR) report was published Thursday 16 July.
The full report can be accessed here.

NHS England and NHS Improvement have also published the second LeDeR: Action from Learning report and easy read version, which describes both the actions undertaken to date and new commitments to reduce health inequalities and premature mortality amongst people with a learning disability.
To find out more click here.

Professor Chris Hatton's blog released on Friday, 17 July 2020The LeDeR report for 2019: a warning from (recent) history for the COVID-19 era.
To find out more click here.
 Psychological support for people with a Learning 
 Disability during COVID-19 

Thriving with Nature
This updated guide is developed by World Wildlife Fund and Mental Health Foundation and describes the mental health benefits of connecting with nature. Contains suggestions on using the senses through each of the seasons.

To find out more click here.
 Guidance from the Government and key stakeholders 

The government announce £62 million to help discharge people with learning disabilities or autistic people from in patient settings
Funding will be given to local councils to accelerate the discharge of people with learning disabilities or autism (or both) from mental health hospitals.

The funding can be spent on costs associated with discharge, including establishing community teams, funding accommodation and staff training. A new independent oversight panel has been set up to improve care and support for inpatients with learning disabilities or autism.

To find out more click here.
Voiceability – The importance of advocacy during Coronavirus
Despite coronavirus, legal duties to refer eligible people for advocacy still apply. Voiceability have produced resources for advocates, professionals, care providers, people who use services and their families.These include:
  • Care Act Easements template letters
  • Resources for health and social care professionals
  • Mythbuster
  • Template letter to raise concerns about restrictions on care
  • Practicing advocacy during coronavirus.
Further information can be accessed here.
Care England: Visitors to services as lockdown eases
As lockdown restrictions are easing, some social care providers are struggling with how to support people to have increased contact with family and friends in a way that is safe, sensible and does not undo the good work done to date. Care England have produced some guidance and a risk-based decision-making tool. This guidance can be accessed here via the Care Provider Alliance website.

BILD – Stories and Lessons from Transforming Care
Helping People Thrive is a new practical guide looking at how to transform the lives of people with a learning disability and/or autistic people who have been detained in hospital or in long term segregation for too long.The Department of Health and Social Care has worked with Baroness Sheila Hollins to bring together stories from people who have experienced the system. They show how it is possible to create a new and satisfying life in the community.

To find out more click here.
Greater Manchester GOLD (Growing Older with Learning Disabilities)
An inclusive research project carried out by a team of older people with learning disabilities to find out what older people with learning disabilities think about their local area, whether they feel part of their local community and what support or barriers exist to meaningful social contacts, interactions and activities.

The final report, Going for GOLD! Growing Older with Learning Disabilities: An inclusive research project to reduce social isolation amongst older adults with learning disabilities found:
  • It is vital that we work to change public perceptions and behaviours towards people with learning disabilities. This may be long term but is vitally important to improve their lives and sense of belonging.
  • Due to experiences of discrimination, segregation and low economic status, people with learning disabilities may be more vulnerable to the negative impacts of growing older through the potential long-term impact on self-esteem and confidence. They also experience more health inequalities than the rest of the population and as a result need accessible and inclusive support throughout their lives to live healthy lifestyles to remain healthy longer.
  • It is vital that future planning takes place with families and individuals so that older people with learning disabilities are better supported to deal with the transition that often takes place when their parents die.
To find out more click here.
 Wearing of face coverings in shops and on
The Challenging Behaviour Foundation have produced a range of resources around mask wearing, these include tips for proactive preparation.

In addition, there is a guide on exemption cards to help people explain to members of the public and the police why someone who is exempt may appear to be not following the rules about masks and social distancing.

To find out more click here.

Surrey and Borders NHS Partnerships have produced a series of 20 films which could be shared with people with a learning disability including one on wearing masks, one explaining the ‘new normal’ and one about how shop’s may be different as a result of coronavirus.

The films can be accessed here.
 Positive Behaviour Support 
New helpline available for families and carers via BILD during COVID
BILD have been asked by the Department of Health & Social Care to set up a PBS Helpline. This will be to provide support to family members (through Contact) and Shared Lives carers (members of Shared Lives Plus) of people with learning disabilities. Bild’s qualified and experienced Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) consultants can provide these and targeted strategies to help get through this next phase through PBS approaches. They will be providing phone support, both 1:1 and in small groups.
To find out more click here.

Recorded Webinars by North East London Foundation Trust
North East London Foundation Trust have developed two 15 mins recorded webinars.

The first looks at physical and emotional vulnerabilities of people with learning disabilities and how these can be negatively affected by the impact of Covid and some suggestions to help. To view click here.

The second webinar looks at behaviours of concern and ways to support people using positive behaviour support. It also looks at ways to support people when they are missing their friends and family and usual activities. To view click here.

Evaluation of the Cumbria Early Intervention Project (CEIP)
A group of statutory, academic and voluntary agencies, and a group of family carers including different branches of the NHS, the Challenging Behaviour Foundation, Carlisle Mencap, the Royal Mencap society (RMS), Northumbria University and the Tizard Centre at Kent University worked on this project.

The pilot ran over 2018-19 and set out to identify key learning points around processes and potential effectiveness in Cumbria and assess any benefits of providing a group of linked programmes for the same families.

The pilot comprised four main strands:
  • Early Positive Approaches to Support (E-PAtS) was aimed at families with children aged 0 to 5.
  • Positive Behaviour Support (PBS) workshops targeted family carers and professionals with a focus on school-aged children.
  • Resilience workshops aimed to support the family carers and targeted those who had already attended E-PAtS or PBS workshops.
  • Co-produced strategy development.

The independent evaluation can be found here.

Talking to people about COVID-19
Cloverleaf Advocacy have produced a sensory story called ‘Everything has Changed’ that uses sounds, tastes, smells and objects to help people explore a tale of friendship in the Coronavirus crisis.
Available on you tube here

Keeping busy - Although lockdown restrictions are easing, many people with learning disabilities and/or autism are still feeling anxious about re-engaging with the community. Dimensions have produced a resource for alternatives to day services which includes a variety of activities that can be done in the home. This includes practical and some tech free alternatives.
To find out more click here.

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