The government has just announced that there will be a consultation around mandatory training on learning disability for NHS staff.

With 1200 avoidable deaths of people living with a learning disability occurring each year as a result of a lack of training of healthcare professionals in treating people with learning disabilities, this announcement is a welcome first step.

Mencap’s Treat Me Well campaign has been running to address these issues and calling for training for all NHS staff in how to treat and communicate with people who have a learning disabilitys.

Jan Tregelles, Mencap’s Chief Executive, has commented:

“These are very welcome, first steps for all NHS staff to get basic training on how to provide high quality care.

“But if the NHS really wants to stop the scandal of the 1,200 preventable deaths of people with a learning disability every year, all nurses and doctors must get higher level training.

“This mandatory training must be in partnership with people with a learning disability and their families, and teach all nurses and doctors how to make reasonable adjustments and understand key laws like the Mental Capacity Act.

“We say to Government – please don’t miss this huge opportunity.”

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