Eye Movement Desensitisation and reprocessing impacts on symptoms of PTSD in adult with learning disabilities


Background Some time ago, we posted about a case study with two individuals with learning disabilities, where the researchers used eye movement desensitisation and reprocessing (EMDR) to achieve a decrease in posttraumatic stress disorder -like symptoms Eye movement desensitisation is an approach that developed out of work in the late 80s, based on observations that [read the full story…]

Development of leave/abscond risk assessment in clinical practice needs evaluation and validation

Individuals more likely to be arrested or taken to ED if living indpependently or with family

The authors of this study, based at the South London and Maudsley Trust, were interested in the way in which leave for patients in secure settings is managed and in particular ways in which the risks associated with managing leave could be assessed. They point out that the number of patients who breach leave conditions [read the full story…]

Short social climate questionnaire is found to have validity in secure learning disability services


The EssenCES is a short questionnaire used for assessing the social climate of forensic psychiatric wards. The Climate dimensions measured are ‘Therapeutic Hold’, ‘Patients’ Cohesion and Mutual Support’ and ‘Safety’ (versus threat of aggression and violence). Studies in forensic services have suggested that the questionnaire is a valid instrument for assessing ward atmosphere. The authors [read the full story…]

Recovery approach shows promise in learning disabilities secure service

few outcome studies found, but personalisation is relatively recent in social work practice

Mental health problems amongst people with learning disabilities have been found to be more prevalent than amongst the general population, although estimates of prevalence rates vary. The authors of this paper were keen to consider whether the recovery approach to mental illness was applicable to people with learning disabilities and mental health needs. The origin [read the full story…]

Involving people with learning disabilities in a secure service in risk assessment supports holistic approach and promotes trust

man at fence

A keystone of policy relating to the support of people with learning disabilities in England is the involvement of service users in planning and delivering their support. This is also reflected in policy relating to risk assessment and management processes. However, the evidence from the literature at present suggests that this involvement is not yet [read the full story…]

Evaluation of adapted sex offender treatment programme in secure learning disability service finds evidence of positive outcomes

shutterstock_6153463 group therapy circle of empty chairs

The Adapted Sex Offender treatment Programme (ASOTP) was piloted in a secure learning disability service. This study set out to evaluate its effectiveness and respond to the criticisms and concerns of conventional closed format programmes. The researchers set out to gather the views of a variety of stakeholders (purchasers, clients, clinicians, group facilitators and clients’ [read the full story…]