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Mental health and social care needs of older people with intellectual disabilities

Strydom, A; Hassiotis, A; Livingston, G; (2005) Mental health and social care needs of older people with intellectual disabilities. Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities , 18 (3) 229 - 235. 10.1111/j.1468-3148.2005.00221.x.

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Background: Older people with intellectual disabilities (ID) are a growing population but their age-related needs are rarely considered and community services are still geared towards the younger age group. We aimed to examine the mental health and social care needs of this new service user group. / Methods: We identified all adults with ID without Down syndrome (DS) aged 65+ living in the London boroughs of Camden and Islington. The Psychiatric Assessment Schedule for Adults with a Developmental Disability (PASADD) checklist was used to detect psychiatric disorder, the Vineland behaviour scale (maladaptive domain) for problem behaviours and the Dementia Questionnaire for persons with Mental Retardation (DMR) to screen for dementia. Carers reported health problems and disability. Needs were measured with the Camberwell Assessment of Need for adults with Intellectual Disabilities (CANDID-S). / Results: A total of 23 older people with ID (13 had mild ID and nine more severe ID) and their carers participated in the survey. In which, 74% had one or more psychiatric symptoms; 30% were previously known with a diagnosis of mental illness. One-third of the older people screened positive for dementia (range: 17-44%, depending on sensitivity of DMR scores used). Three quarters of the group had physical health problems, 74% had poor sight, 22% had hearing loss and 30% had mobility problems. Carers rated unmet needs for accommodation (22%), day activities, and eyesight and hearing. The people with ID rated unmet needs to be social relationships (44%), information and physical health. / Conclusion: Older people with ID without DS have considerable prevalence of health problems and psychiatric disorders, including symptoms of functional decline and dementia. Such symptoms are often not recognised and further research into their needs is a priority.

Type: Article
Title: Mental health and social care needs of older people with intellectual disabilities
DOI: 10.1111/j.1468-3148.2005.00221.x
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/j.1468-3148.2005.00221.x
Language: English
Keywords: ageing, geriatrics, intellectual disabilities, mental health, mental retardation, needs, social care, dementia questionnaire, psychiatric disorders, learning disabilities, retardation DMR, medical aspects, Downs syndrome, adults, population, prevalence, reliability
URI: http://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1932
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