Call for help in two national research projects

There is sparse evidence for the efficacy and safety of antipsychotics in people with learning disabilities.

Normally here at WELD, we are in the business of reporting research findings and drawing attention to the evidence. However, two new research projects caught our eye this week as they are to do with subjects we have previously posted about. Both projects are looking for people to get in touch with their experiences, so if you can help, please contact the researchers directly. Also, please pass on the call to your colleagues and through your networks, real and virtual!

Firstly, the NDTi is looking at reasonable adjustments that mental health services are making to respond positively to people with learning disabilities, and to people with autism. Peter Bates at the NDTi is leading on this and you can read more at

You can email Peter at

Secondly, Dr Liz Tilley at the Open University is conducting research into how decisions are made about contraception for women with learning disabilities.

She wants to hear from family members, friends, advocates or practitioners who have been involved in making decisions about contraception, There is a survey from to complete that should take no longer than 15 minutes to complete. Your response will be anonymous and information will be used to inform a programme to develop best practice.

You can access the survey online here::

You can contact Liz directly by email

Do get in touch if you can help with either of these projects and we look forward to reporting the findings shortly.

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John Northfield

After qualifying as a social worker, John worked in community learning disability teams before getting involved in a number of long-stay hospital closure programmes, working to develop individual plans for people moving into their own homes. He worked for BILD, helping to develop the Quality Network and was editorial lead for the NHS electronic library learning disabilities specialist collection. This led him to found the Learning Disabilities Elf site with Andre Tomlin as a way of making the evidence accessible to practitioners in health and social care. Most recently he has worked as part of Mencap's national quality team and also been involved in a number of national website developments, including the General Medical Council's learning disabilities site.

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