This guideline on the assessment, diagnosis, treatment and support of people with learning disabilities who develop dementia was co-published by the British Psychological Society and the Royal College of Psychiatrists in September 2009.
The purpose of this report is to enable persons working in clinical and social care services to improve the quality of life of people with learning disabilities who develop dementia, by providing guidance to inform assessment, diagnosis, treatment and support. The guidance is aimed at clinicians in learning disability and older peoples’ mental health services and services for younger people with dementia.
The report’s focus is on the main factors which constitute the elements of an excellent service, and on helping those working in services to evaluate how they might help the increasing numbers of people with learning disabilities who are developing dementia given improvements in life-expectancy.
The main contents cover:
- The broader context.
- Baseline and monitoring.
- Reasons for apparent decline in functioning.
- Clinical presentation of dementia.
- Decision making / informing people.
- Additional health / clinical issues associated with dementia.
- Understanding of the dementia process.
- Philosophy of care.
- Meeting changing needs / interventions.
- End of life issues (EOL).
- Capable commissioning for people with learning disabilities and dementia.
- Capable workforce.
- References and an Appendix on Good Practice Standards.