Watchdog says learning disabled need more help

Bicester Advertiser: Tracey Taylor Tracey Taylor

MORE must be done by county GPs to accommodate people with learning disabilities after focus group members raised concerns, a charity said.

My Life My Choice received views from more than 100 people about their experiences at GP practices in a study commissioned by Healthwatch Oxfordshire, the official health and social care watchdog.

Fifty-one per cent gave their GP a 10/10 overall score but there were concerns about getting appointments. The Oxford charity also said “insufficient attention” is given to making practices easy to use through ramps and disabled toilets.

And it said parents and carers “often find their opinions and assessments ignored by healthcare professionals”.

Staff “have very limited knowledge about learning disability” and warned of “poor” working between different parts of the NHS.

Charity trustee Tracey Taylor said: “We hope that the findings in this report and our recommendations, such as delivering additional user-led training, will inform and continue to improve on the work that has already been done in Oxfordshire.”

Oxford GP Dr Paul Roblin, chief executive of the British Medical Association’s Oxfordshire local medical committee, said practices had been hit by Government under-investment.

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