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BHB forms new team of medics to help people with intellectual disabilities

Care in the community: members of the Community Intellectual Disabilities Team (Photograph supplied)

A team of medics has been formed to support those with intellectual disabilities and their families at home.

The Community Intellectual Disabilities Team consists of nurses and therapists who work together to meet the needs of the clients and their families.

Christopher Cunningham, the team’s clinical manager, said: “There is a pressing need to better support for adults with intellectual disability who live at home with their families.

“People who have intellectual disabilities can live full and wonderful lives at home with their families, and we can help this happen with a strong support service for them. We don’t want families to struggle on their own, or see their loved ones deteriorate because they can’t access the support they need.

“By providing a support service for clients who live with their families, we want to improve access to safe and equitable care, empower clients and their families to be actively involved in their healthcare, increase levels of independence, and help clients develop new skills so they can thrive in their community.”

The team consists of a nurse, a rehabilitation therapist, rehab aides, a psychology assistant, a case manager, and a clinical assistant, and is the process of recruiting for an occupational therapist, speech and language pathologist and physiotherapist to complete the group.

Intellectual Disability Director, Morrisa Rogers, added: “We are thrilled to see the Community Intellectual Disability team established – this has been a long plan in the making.

“The need is there, and we believe there are many families who could benefit from our support, but who are currently struggling on their own. We want to better support families and their loved ones with intellectual disabilities so they can flourish in their homes.

“They may have additional needs, but intellectual disabilities should not stop anyone from being able to live a full and loving life on their own terms.”

The service is available via referral from physicians or other agencies, and individuals can contact the service directly if they believe they need it. They can call 249-3807 or 239-3803.

To be eligible, to access the community intellectual disability team service, an individual must be over 18 and have an intellectual disability as defined by the World Health Organisation, which means an individual has a significantly reduced ability to understand new or complex information, to learn new skills (impaired intelligence) and a reduced ability to cope independently (impaired social function) which started before adulthood with a lasting effect on development (lifelong condition).

The individual also needs to have a presenting health need that requires intervention from the CIDT, and the person’s intellectual disability is directly impacting their ability to have this health need met through mainstream service.

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Published July 20, 2021 at 7:53 am (Updated July 20, 2021 at 7:31 am)

BHB forms new team of medics to help people with intellectual disabilities

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