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The Development of a Programme of Mental Health Services for People with Intellectual Disability in Ireland

Authors: Philip Charles Dodd , Ciara Latimer, Margo Wrigley

Abstract Introduction: Within the current mental health policy in Ireland, Vision for Change (HSE, 2006), people with intellectual disabilities (I.D.) (target population) should have access to high quality mental health services, including an I.D. specific multi-disciplinary community mental health team.Historically mental health services for this population were poorly developed, without a clear policy or implementation strategy. Services that did exist were often embedded within social care services, with unclear pathways and models of care.Resources are being allocated to Mental Health of Intellectual Disability (MHID) services on an ongoing basis. Therefore the requirement to develop a clear strategy of implementing Vision for Change (HSE, 2006) for MHID was clear.Aim: To develop a clear programme of development of MHID services for children and adults, for full national implementation across mental health and social care services (key stakeholders).The timeline for the programme is 2 years beginning July 2016. The programme involves a number of key stages including:Scoping and mapping of existing resourcesDefining a clear pathway to careDeveloping clear governance arrangementsDeveloping clinical activity metricsKey initial results from this programme will be presented including key service mapping data, as well as planned governance and care pathway arrangements. As this is a national programme, it is envisaged that there will be full be transferability of services achieved through collaboration and partnership across the relevant key divisions, organisations, disciplines and with Service Users and their families. Given the inclusive nature of the design of the programme, it’s sustainability potential is strongDeveloping a complex programme of service development involving existing and new resources across different service divisions requires services to be planned in an integrated manner.The intended impact of this programme is to improve the quality of mental health care and service experience.


mental health, intellectual disability, policy, service development

How to Cite:

Dodd PC, Latimer C, Wrigley M. The Development of a Programme of Mental Health Services for People with Intellectual Disability in Ireland. International Journal of Integrated Care. 2017;17(5):A90.

DOI: on 17th October 2017