Show Summary Details
Page of

Palliative and end-of-life care for people with learning disabilities 

Palliative and end-of-life care for people with learning disabilities
Palliative and end-of-life care for people with learning disabilities

Max Watson

, Rachel Campbell

, Nandini Vallath

, Stephen Ward

, and Jo Wells

Page of

PRINTED FROM OXFORD MEDICINE ONLINE ( © Oxford University Press, 2016. All Rights Reserved. Under the terms of the licence agreement, an individual user may print out a PDF of a single chapter of a title in Oxford Medicine Online for personal use (for details see Privacy Policy and Legal Notice).

date: 22 August 2019

This chapter highlights some of the issues and challenges which exist in the provision of palliative and end-of-life care for people with learning disabilities and how some of these can be addressed. The challenges fall into four key areas: assessment, communication, consent, and bereavement. The reader is also signposted to websites and resources which are helpful in caring for people with learning disability at the end of their life. Concerns exist around choice and the quality of end-of-life care that people with learning disabilities may be offered. A number of different terms have evolved over the years for ‘learning disability’. Currently this term is used in the UK, but in Europe and in other parts of the world, the term ‘intellectual disability’ is used. Internationally there is a consensus that a learning disability can be identified when the following criteria are present: intellectual impairment (known as reduced IQ), social or adaptive dysfunction combined with reduced IQ, and early onset. It is thought that around 2.5% of the population in the UK has a learning disability, but it has also been predicted that this may increase by 1% per year over the next number of years.

Access to the complete content on Oxford Medicine Online requires a subscription or purchase. Public users are able to search the site and view the abstracts for each book and chapter without a subscription.

Please subscribe or login to access full text content.

If you have purchased a print title that contains an access token, please see the token for information about how to register your code.

For questions on access or troubleshooting, please check our FAQs, and if you can't find the answer there, please contact us.