Learning disabilities report

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Summary of report content

Learning disability is one of Healthwatch Sheffield's priority topics. They undertook a survey of people with learning disabilities to find out their experience of health and social care. 143 responses were received. The findings of our survey indicate that, in Sheffield, people with a learning disability are generally more satisfied with the availability of appointments and the help or treatment they receive than the general population surveyed in 2014. However, this report recommends that a number of areas are addressed to improve the help and care that people with learning disability receive from health and social care services. A number of key themes emerged: The attitude of staff is key to an individual’s experience of using a service. Respondents told Healthwatch Sheffield that their experiences of services could be improved if more health and social care professionals had a better understanding of the needs of people with a learning disability. Communicating and sharing information effectively is a recurring theme, written materials need to be both appropriate and accessible. Regular two-way communication was important to respondents, including regular social care reviews. Many people with learning disabilities also have physical disabilities so appropriate access to services is important A calming physical environment is ideal. This report should inform providers and commissioners of health and social care services in Sheffield, as well as being of interest to the public.

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General details

Report title 
Learning disabilities report
Local Healthwatch 
Healthwatch Sheffield
Date of publication 
Thursday, 22 June, 2017
Date evidence capture began 
Thursday, 22 June, 2017
Date evidence capture finished 
Thursday, 22 June, 2017
Type of report 
Key themes 
Communication between staff and patients
Health inequalities
Healthwatch reference number 

Methodology and approach

Was the work undertaken at the request of another organisation? 
What type of organisation requested the work 
Primary research method used 
How was the information collected? 
If an Enter and View methodology was applied, was the visit announced or unannounced? 

Details of health and care services included in the report

Primary care services 
GP practice
Secondary care services 
Acute services with overnight beds
Acute services without overnight beds / listed acute services with or without overnight beds
Social care services 
Adult social care

Details of people who shared their views

Number of people who shared their views 
Age group 
Sexual orientation 
Not known
Does the information include public's views? 
Does the information include carer's, friend's or relative's views? 
Does the information include staff's views? 
Does the information include other people's views? 
What was the main sentiment of the people who shared their views? 

Outcomes and impact

Were recommendations made by local Healthwatch in the report? 
Does the information contain a response from a provider? 
Is there evidence of impact in the report? 
Is there evidence of impact external to the report? 

Network Impact
Relationships that exist locally, regionally, nationally have benefited from the work undertaken in the report
Implied Impact
Where it is implied that change may occur in the future as a result of Healthwatch work. This can be implied in a provider  response, press release or other source. Implied impact can become tangible impact once change has occurred.
Tangible Impact
There is evidence of change that can be directly attributed to Healthwatch work undertaken in the report.