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COVID-19 clinical support

The current category is Managing Co-morbidities during Covid-19 pandemic

Learning disabilities & autism

Community services in SEL

Patients with LD have a higher incidence of respiratory disease and may be significantly impacted by the coronavirus. This document is a practical guide to how to approach assessment and care in these patients.

  • NHSE and Improvement have provided a Support Pack for GP Practices Restarting Annual Learning Disability Health Checks, please see this guidance for more information on Annual Health Checks and people with Learning Disabilities

STOMP/STAMP online medication pathway
The Challenging Behaviour Foundation (CBF) have produced this resource as part of the NHS programme for Stopping the Over-Medication of People with a learning disability, autism or both (STOMP). This practical resource has been developed with and for families of people with learning disabilities, autism or both who are prescribed or may be prescribed psychotropic medication. The online resource is here.

Continuing to support people with a learning disability (Updated 10th November from NHS England Primary Care Bulletin)

Delivering proactive health checks for people with a learning disability continues to be an important activity to promote the health of this group of patients. 

Healthcare professionals should discuss with the patient (if considered to have mental capacity), their carer or their advocate the most suitable and safe way to conduct a health check. Where this can be delivered safely on a face to face basis this should continue. Where this is not possible, or where the patient has other medical conditions which require them to shield or socially isolate, the review could be conducted remotely with as much of the physical review completed as is practicable in these circumstances.

Practices should use their clinical judgement and knowledge of the patient, together with the advice of family or other carers, in determining whether they would be able to participate in a remote review. Reasonable adjustments should be made to accommodate the needs of patients and carers as well as considering the capacity and capability of the GP practice whilst working in different ways. Where practices can demonstrate that they are taking an individual approach to health check delivery and are completing as much of the prescribed elements as practicable then they will be eligible for payment under the DES during 2020/21.

The delivery of care to this group of patients is further supported this year through the amended QOF Quality Improvement requirements and an additional incentive for health check coverage available to the Primary Care Network through the Investment and Impact Fund.

Vaccination support information

GSTT’s Community LD Nurses have created a toolkit including a conversation tool to aide consent process, information for supporters regarding needle phobia and collated easy-read information about the vaccines in both leaflet and presentation format.

Mencap have also created an easy read resource to support people with learning disabilities with Coronavirus and the vaccine.

The Annual Health Check Toolkit has been developed by the NHS England and Improvement London team, colleagues across London including South East London CCG colleagues. It’s designed to guide GPs through all aspects of supporting people with Learning Disabilities through Annual Health Checks, including holding part of the consultations virtually due to the pandemic.

https://www.keepsafe.org.uk/ has a list of free to use easy read posters on lots of topics, including Coronavirus, accessing the NHS, PPE, accessing food banks and domestic abuse in lockdown.

The Challenging Behaviour Foundation have produced guidance to provide families and carers of people with Learning Disabilities with the information they need around supporting their loved one or service user with the Covid-19 vaccination. This includes guidance on the vaccine, what reasonable adjustments they can make to reduce stress and other support available

NHSE/I Primary Care have developed an easy read COVID-19 Immunisation letter template for use by local vaccination services. It is currently recommended communication and invitations for autistic people and those with a learning disability in an at risk group should be invited via local vaccination service as the primary route to ensure appropriate reasonable adjustments can be facilitated. In line with the government guidelines on cohort prioritisation set by JCVI, autistic people or those with a learning disability are invited for their vaccination when eligible

Covid-19 and Down syndrome (added 19th November 2020)

In light of the recent analysis by Public Health England, that deaths from Covid-19 were ‘six times higher’ among people with learning disabilities, and the new government rules on shielding for people with Down’s syndrome, we’ve been asked by Mencap to publicise this resource pack from the Down’s Syndrome Association, to help all health and social care professionals understand the current issues facing this cohort.

Information on shielding advice for adults with Down syndrome is available via the Downs Syndrome Medical Interest Group