Up to 35,000 adults with a learning disability are being over medicated without appropriate clinical justification
NHS England says it is taking urgent measures to tackle the over-medication of people with learning disabilities.
Sir Stephen Bubb, chief executive of the Association of Chief Executives of Voluntary Organisations (ACEVO) stated that up to 35,000 adults with a learning disability are being prescribed an antipsychotic, an antidepressant or both without appropriate clinical justification.
Sir Stephen Bubb was asked to lead a review following the Winterbourne View scandal, which saw six workers jailed for serious abuse and neglect of patients at the private hospital near Bristol. Following on from his report, Sir Stephen has stated that although the government and the NHS have pledged to improve conditions for people with learning disabilities there has been a continued over-use of medicines in people with learning disabilities and autism. Furthermore, these medicines have been inappropriately used as a chemical restraint to control behaviour, despite guidelines recommending against this.
Katherine Murphy, Chief Executive of the Patients Association said today:
“The treatment of these patients is completely deplorable. The prescription of an antipsychotic, an antidepressant or both without appropriate clinical justification can cause long term damage to physical and mental health with undesirable neurological and metabolic side-effects. These patients must not be forgotten; mental health care is far too important for these patients to be ignored. The Government and NHS England must stick by their promises and put in place adequate provisions to prevent this unacceptable level of patient care occurring.”
The Law Commission Consultation: Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty
The Law Commission’s consultation paper, Mental Capacity and Deprivation of Liberty has been published. The consultation paper reviews the Deprivation of Liberty Safeguards (the DoLS) in England and Wales. The goal is to replace the DoLS with a straightforward and accessible legal framework which provides appropriate safeguards for people who lack capacity whose care or treatment is becoming restrictive. This consultation paper is over 251 pages with 42 questions. The Patients Association is concerned that this consultation document has the potential to be ignored due to the size of the document and number of questions. However, if you wish to respond to specific questions the Patients Association will be happy to take your views. Please send your comments to firstname.lastname@example.org by Friday 30th October 2015
Transition between inpatient hospital settings and community or care home settings for adults with social care needs: draft guideline consultation
Link to the Consultation here.
This guideline covers all adults with identified social care needs, including older people. It does not include children and young people. It covers transitions between general hospital and community or care home settings. It does not include inpatient mental health settings. A separate NICE guideline on transitions between inpatient mental health settings and community and care home settings is being developed.
The Patients Association is preparing a response and invites our readers to give their view. Please send your comments to email@example.com by Monday 3rd August 2015.