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Leicestershire Centre for Integrated Living

Winterbourne View: Group says annual checks can lengthen life

Date: 2/6/2021
Summary: A group set-up following the Winterbourne View scandal is urging more people with learning disabilities to attend their annual health check-up.

Healthwatch South Gloucestershire said regular health checks could prevent people from dying unnecessarily.

It formed after BBC Panorama exposed abuse of patients at Winterbourne View hospital 10 years ago.

Only about 36 per cent of people with learning difficulties are believed to have an annual GP health check-up.

The Local Democracy Reporting Service (LDRS). said the lack of regular, medical observations contributed to them having a life expectancy of 20 years lower than in the wider population.

Healthwatch South Gloucestershire, a regional, independent health and social care champion, has created a checklist to encourage more people to attend appointments to help them improve their life expectancy.

Vicky Marriott from the group said: "It is our unrelenting mission to listen and share people's lived experience so that the information informs how health and social care services improve.

"We recently listened to people with learning disabilities and their families and developed with them an accessible info-sheet packed full of easy-to-read explanations about the lifesaving benefits of annual health checks."

Patients and carers can complete the checklist prior to their appointment. The information is designed to help them recognise possible symptoms and how to seek help.

Healthwatch South Gloucestershire was set-up following the publication of footage filmed at Winterbourne View hospital in Hambrook, Bristol.

The footage showed disabled people being pinned down, slapped, taunted, teased and dragged into showers while fully clothed.

Source: BBC

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