Connect for Change: an update on learning disability services in England

The Royal College of Nursing published on Monday, 22 February 2016, a report about the care and support for people with learning disabilities and their families, including recommendations to address the issues highlighted.

It is available for download here.

The Royal College of Nursing (RCN) proposes the following recommendations to address the issues highlighted in the report.

Workforce Services
• A long-term workforce strategy that connects workforce planning to the transformation and delivery of services for children and adults with learning disabilities.
• Every acute hospital should employ at least one Learning Disability Liaison Nurse. By 2020/21 all acute hospitals should have 24-hour Learning Disability Liaison Nurse cover.
• Up-skill all general nursing staff to care for those with learning disabilities and/or autism, or those who display behaviour that challenges.
• An increase in the number of learning disability student nurse training places to grow an appropriately skilled workforce.


• Ensure that quality community services are commissioned to support the appropriate transition of people from inpatient care to living more independently in the community.
• Establish long-term commissioning arrangements of community services to protect children and adults who rely on vital services in the community.
• Newly commissioned services in the community must provide support to children and adults, and those who care for them, to help prevent crises, and not just be available at crisis point.
• Positive behaviour support to be embedded across organisations and training to be provided to those who may be caring for someone who presents behaviour that challenges.