Psychotropic medications: scale and patterns of prescribing to people with learning disabilities

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In this blog, John Northfield considers a study of rates and patterns of prescribing psychotropic medications by GPs to people with learning disabilities and/or autism.

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Reducing specialist inpatient beds for people with learning disabilities: some issues explored

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Transforming Care, the government’s response to WInterbourne view, set some clear targets for the development of community services and the reduction on specialist inpatient bed numbers.

Here Alix Dixon looks at a paper, which used some illustrative case examples to explore some of the policy and practice issues around these targets.

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Staff training for challenging behaviour – what impact does it have?

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Training for staff in understanding and responding to challenging behaviour – must be a good thing… But how much do we know about the impact of this training on subsequent staff performance and levels of challenging behaviour?

Here, Louise Phillips looks at a review of the literature that set out to explore these questions in more detail.

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Behavioural/cognitive-behavioural interventions in aggressive challenging behaviour

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Reported rates of seriously challenging behaviour vary considerably in the literature, but the impact can be significant on the person, their family and their supporters.

Here we look at what a Cochrane review of the evidence from randomised controlled trials has to say about the effectiveness of behavioural and cognitive-behavioural interventions for what is defined as outwardly aggressive challenging behaviour.

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High cost placements for people with learning disabilities and complex and challenging needs

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People with learning disabilities who have complex and challenging needs may find themselves placed in specialist services, sometimes distant from family and local support networks, often at high cost to the commissioners.

Here Ruth Northway looks at the findings of a survey of commissioning teams in south east England reporting on the nature and costs of such placements.

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Can we model the development and maintenance of self-injury in children with developmental delay?

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Self-injurious behaviour can have a severe impact on the quality of life of some children with developmental delay.

Here, Alix Dixon looks at a review of an extensive body of literature around potential causal mechanisms and aggravating characteristics which aims to develop a clearer working model to inform practice.

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Physical restraint: Why has it increased in Norway?

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In 1999, the law in Norway governing the use of physical intervention was changed with the aim of reducing and restricting their use.

Here, Rachel Allen looks at some research that set out to find out what has happened since the change in the law.

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NICE challenging behaviour guidelines stress person centred proactive support but barriers to achievement still exist

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NICE guidelines on supporting people with learning disabilities and challenging behaviour have now been published. Here we look at the main recommendations and reflect on how likely they are to improve practice.

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Tracking psychotropic medication use for management of aggressive behaviour

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Psychotropic medications are prescribed widely to many people with learning disabilities, but there remain many concerns about over, or improper use of such medications.

Here, Kate van Dooren looks at a study which collected data from 100 participants over a period of time to look at psychotropic medication and the relationship between dose, demographic factors and aggression scores.

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What is it like to receive or use restraint interventions? A systematic review of the literature

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Whilst there is a good deal of research into the use of physical interventions in the management of challenging behaviour, there is less available on the way these are experienced by people receiving them, or the staff and family carers involved.

Here, Rose Tomlins looks at a review of the literature that focused on these experiences.

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