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NHS discriminating against disabled patients, says Mencap

Published on 23/06/2010
People with learning disabilities receive poorer care from the NHS, doctors and nurses have said.

A survey by learning disability charity Mencap found that almost half of doctors (46 per cent) and over a third of nurses (37 per cent) say that they believe the mentally handicapped receive worse care than other patients.

Furthermore, 45 per cent of doctors and 33 per cent of nurses admitted to having personally witnessed a patient with a learning disability being treated with neglect or a lack of dignity or receiving poor quality care from the NHS.

Mencap suggested this could be partly explained by a lack of adequate training, with 35 per cent of healthcare professionals saying they have not been trained in how to make reasonable adjustments for patients with learning disabilities.

"The fact that so many healthcare professionals recognise the gaps in their own training and the need for specific guidelines for treating people with a learning disability, shows the need for urgent action before more people suffer," said Mark Goldring, Mencap's chief executive.

According to Mencap figures, around 1.5 million people in the UK have a learning disability.
© ActiveQuote Ltd. 2010


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