Advances in mental health and intellectual disabilities

Eddie Chaplin (South London and Maudsley NHS Foundation Trust, London, UK AND King’s College London, London, UK)
Jean O'Hara (Behavioural and Developmental Psychiatry Clinical Academic Group, South London and Maudsley Trust, London, UK)

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities

ISSN: 2044-1282

Article publication date: 5 January 2015



Chaplin, E. and O'Hara, J. (2015), "Advances in mental health and intellectual disabilities", Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Vol. 9 No. 1.



Emerald Group Publishing Limited


Article Type: Editorial From: Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, Volume 9, Issue 1

We would like to welcome you to the first edition of 2015. Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities (AMHID) for those new to the journal aims to integrate current research with practice across a wide range of areas relating to the mental health of people with intellectual disabilities. As well as articles on leading and pioneering research we welcome submissions on the delivery of both high-quality evidence-based practice and the experience of those using or supporting people to use services.

This edition has a number of themes and includes articles from a number of under researched areas, and recent developments in the field of mental health and intellectual disabilities. The first paper by Cooray and colleagues, is a systematic review informing the 11th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD) which sets global standards for defining, reporting and managing health conditions. The authors report that the poor clinical utility of the current version may impede access to healthcare services and social inclusion for our most vulnerable groups in society. The review is part of an international collaborative programme, undertaken by the Faculty of Psychiatry of Intellectual Disability, Royal College of Psychiatrists, UK with support from the World Health Organisation (WHO). The paper offers a particularly welcome insight into the process of revising ICD, with the publication of the ICD-11 due later this year.

The literature review by Loynes and O’Hara, examines an important but under researched area, that of supporting and meeting the spiritual needs of people with intellectual disabilities and mental health problems. The authors review the factors impacting on meeting the spiritual needs of people with intellectual disability (ID), identify implications for practice and make achievable recommendations for taking this agenda forward.

Rose and colleagues’ qualitative study offers the perception of service managers on their service prior to, and following the delivery of a cognitive-behavioural therapy anger management group for individuals with an ID. This process helped to identify areas to target for improvement and provided an insight into issues including staffing that can affect the group.

Fjermestad and colleagues describe a Cognitive Behavioural Therapy group for Adolescents with 22q11.2 Deletion Syndrome (22q11.2DS). The group is designed to assess psychosocial functioning of participants with this rare genetic syndrome, who are at increased risk of psychiatric disorders. As well as offering an overview of 22q11.2DS and the CBT sessions, it identifies a number of practical considerations for clinicians facilitating similar groups teaching CBT techniques and the adjustments required to improve the user experience.

The final paper from Bevins and colleagues returns to the theme of staff views and relates to another under researched area of the use of music therapy for people with intellectual disabilities. This paper examines staff views of a music therapy group for people with intellectual disabilities and dementia. As well as the groups being welcomed by those attending, staff were able to identify benefits for those attending the group.

We hope you enjoy reading this issue. We editors welcome the submission of papers from researchers, practitioners, experts by experience, managers and academics who are involved in research with or delivering practice to people with intellectual disabilities with additional mental health needs. A number of articles types are welcome. These include:

  • current research;

  • developments in the design and delivery of services;

  • policy and its implications for practice;

  • clinical case studies, enabling professionals to learn from the experience of others and to improve their own practice;

  • general and systematic reviews; and

  • first hand accounts of mental health and using services.

Choosing to publish with this journal means your work will be easily accessible to others which will be abstracted and indexed in: British Nursing Index, Educational Research Abstracts, EBSCO Academic Search Alumni/Complete/Elite/Premier, Illustrata, PsycINFO, Scopus, Social Care Online, ZETOC.

Finally we would like to introduce Vesna Jordanova, as commissioning editor, onto the team and once again to thank Steve Hardy the former Editor who was instrumental in setting up this journal. Steve continues to offer his support as a member of the Editorial Board and on behalf of the Editors, Editorial Board and subscribers of the journal we wish him well.

Eddie Chaplin and Jean O'Hara

Related articles