This Ausmed Course gives learners a foundational understanding of providing individualised care to a person living with a developmental disability, including autism spectrum disorder (ASD), Down syndrome and cerebral palsy.
- The prevalence of developmental disabilities
- Understanding the unique needs of this population group
- Individualised and patient-centred care strategies
- Understanding relevant pharmacological treatments
- Providing proactive care and holistic discharge planning
People with developmental disabilities have a higher prevalence of chronic disease, a shorter life expectancy, higher morbidity and mortality rates, and are twice as likely as the general population to die from preventable causes. Additionally, people with developmental disabilities are hospitalised more frequently and at younger ages, and have significantly longer hospital stays than those without disabilities.
Furthermore, within interdisciplinary teams, there is a high prevalence of ineffective communication and collaboration, which can lead to patient dissatisfaction, misdiagnosis, delayed treatment, medication errors, injury or death.
Despite these stakes, there are few best-practice guidelines and recommended nursing interventions available for professionals to refer to. It is this overall lack of knowledge and understanding of developmental disabilities that needs addressing.
Without more targeted education regarding caring for people with developmental disabilities for all healthcare professionals, there will continue to be gaps in the care provided, thus furthering negative health outcomes for this patient group.
The purpose of this Ausmed Course is to offer a foundational understanding of the key challenges faced by people living with developmental disabilities. It specifically focuses on the higher need for interdisciplinary care to enhance the experience of this population. Moreover, it aims to equip those involved in the care of people with developmental disabilities with the knowledge and strategies needed to enhance their capabilities in meeting their care needs.
- Understand the intersection between disability and health.
- Describe the role and value of the interdisciplinary team, both individually and collectively, throughout the care journey of people with developmental disabilities.
- Differentiate between proactive and reactive care in addressing the health needs of people with developmental disabilities.
- Develop the mindset and the skills to provide considered and individualised care for people with developmental disabilities in all health settings.
Nurses and other healthcare professionals looking to increase their understanding of the variety of roles involved in caring for a person with developmental disabilities.
No conflict of interest exists for anyone in the position to control content for this activity. Wherever possible, generic or non-proprietary names of medications or products have been used.