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Article
Publication date: 29 July 2019

Mahesh Odiyoor, Samuel Joseph Tromans, Regi T. Alexander, Srinaveen Akbari, Gill Bell, Sandy Bering, Sujeet Jaydeokar and Amrith Shetty

The purpose of this paper is to provide a professional consensus position with regard to the provision of specialist inpatient rehabilitation services for people with…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to provide a professional consensus position with regard to the provision of specialist inpatient rehabilitation services for people with intellectual disability (ID), autism and mental health, behavioural or forensic needs in the UK.

Design/methodology/approach

The concept of rehabilitation is discussed, as well as the functions and goals of specialist inpatient rehabilitation services with regard to the aforementioned contexts. Current use of rehabilitation beds is considered, both on a regional and national scale, as well as various outcome measures, including effectiveness, patient safety and patient experience.

Findings

There is a clear need for specialist inpatient rehabilitation services, though historically there have been instances of inappropriate admissions, as well as lengthy inpatient stays that could have been significantly reduced with the right type of community support package. Such services should be subjected to rigorous measurement of outcome measures, to determine that patients within such services are receiving a consistently high standard of care. Additionally, amendments to current legal frameworks should be considered, with a view to accommodating for individuals with capacity who require continuous community-based supervision.

Originality/value

To the best of the author’s knowledge, this is the first article detailing a professional consensus position for specialist inpatient rehabilitation services for people with ID, autism and mental health, behavioural or forensic needs.

Details

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol. 13 no. 5
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1282

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Article
Publication date: 3 April 2018

Rahul Rai, Samuel Tromans, Chaya Kapugama, Verity Chester, Ignatius Gunaratna, Peter Langdon and Regi T. Alexander

The diagnosis of psychosis in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) poses a unique clinical challenge. The presence of intellectual disability (ID) further…

Abstract

Purpose

The diagnosis of psychosis in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) poses a unique clinical challenge. The presence of intellectual disability (ID) further complicates the diagnostic picture. Reliable and timely diagnosis of psychosis in such individuals minimises the duration of untreated psychotic symptoms and the subsequent impact on the quality of life of the patients concerned. The paper aims to discuss this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

The authors present four patients with psychosis, ASD and ID, who have received care within forensic mental health and ID settings. These examples demonstrate the interaction between these conditions, as well as issues pertaining to diagnosis and management.

Findings

In all four patients, sustained use of antipsychotic medication was objectively associated with an improvement in psychotic symptoms and quality of life. In instances where autistic phenomena were accentuated upon development of psychosis, such features returned to the baseline levels evident prior to the onset of psychosis.

Practical implications

The discussion and related case examples could improve the understanding of the possibility of psychosis in individuals with ASD and ID, and increase awareness of this diagnostic possibility among healthcare professionals.

Originality/value

This is the first published case series illustrating the challenges of diagnosing psychosis in individuals with ASD and ID.

Details

Advances in Autism, vol. 4 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2056-3868

Keywords

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Article
Publication date: 24 January 2011

Regi Alexander, Avinash Hiremath, Verity Chester, Fatima Green, Ignatius Gunaratna and Sudeep Hoare

The aim of the project was to evaluate the short‐term treatment outcomes of patients treated in a medium secure service for people with intellectual disability. A total of…

Abstract

The aim of the project was to evaluate the short‐term treatment outcomes of patients treated in a medium secure service for people with intellectual disability. A total of 138 patients, 77 discharged and 61 current inpatients, treated over a six‐year period were included in the audit. Information on demographic and clinical variables was collected on a pre‐designed data collection tool and analysed using appropriate statistical methods. The median length of stay for the discharged group was 2.8 years. About 90% of this group were discharged to lower levels of security and about a third went directly to community placements. None of the clinical and forensic factors examined was significantly associated with length of stay for this group. There was a ‘difficult to discharge long‐stay’ group which had more patients with criminal sections, restriction orders, history of abuse, fire setting, personality disorders and substance misuse. However, when regression analysis was done, most of these factors were not predictive of the length of stay. Clinical diagnosis or offending behaviour categories are poor predictors of length of hospital stay, and there is a need to identify empirically derived patient clusters using a variety of clinical and forensic variables. Common datasets and multi‐centre audits are needed to drive this.

Details

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1282

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Article
Publication date: 24 January 2011

Verity Chester, Fatima Green and Regi Alexander

This paper briefly reviews the literature on smoking and smoking cessation programmes for people with intellectual disability, and describes the baseline audit of such a…

Abstract

This paper briefly reviews the literature on smoking and smoking cessation programmes for people with intellectual disability, and describes the baseline audit of such a programme for patients resident in a forensic service. The audit describes the prevalence of smoking, its significant associations and the effect of an intervention programme. In total, 79 patients participated in the audit, 48 of whom were smokers on admission (60.8%). Roughly a third of smokers gave up during their hospital stay (N = 15). Those who did not give up significantly reduced the number of cigarettes they smoked per day. Female smokers appeared less likely to give up than men. Length of stay and treatment with anti‐psychotic medication were not significantly linked to smoking behaviour. A simple smoking cessation programme with an emphasis on health education and nicotine replacement therapies appeared to be effective in cutting down smoking rates and tobacco consumption in this population. One should be cautious about generalising the conclusions to all forensic hospital services for people with intellectual disability, as the audit was limited by the lack of a control group and conducted in a single service.

Details

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol. 5 no. 1
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1282

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Article
Publication date: 15 July 2011

Amie Plant, Emily McDermott, Verity Chester and Regi T. Alexander

There have been few studies about the prevalence of substance abuse and links to offending behaviour among those with intellectual disabilities. This paper aims to address…

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Abstract

Purpose

There have been few studies about the prevalence of substance abuse and links to offending behaviour among those with intellectual disabilities. This paper aims to address this issue.

Design/methodology/approach

This baseline audit describes: the prevalence of alcohol and substance misuse in patients within a forensic intellectual disability service; and the introduction of a Drug and Alcohol Awareness Course. In total, 74 patients were included in the audit.

Findings

Roughly half of the patients audited had co‐morbid harmful use or dependence with the problem being equally prevalent in men and women. Whilst alcohol and cannabis were the commonest drugs of abuse, cocaine, stimulants and opiates were abused by a small but significant number. Of those with harmful use or dependence, 35 per cent had used the drug in the immediate lead up to their index offence. A diagnosis of personality disorder and past history of convictions for violent offences was significantly more likely to be present in the group with harmful use or dependence. There were no differences on major mental illnesses or pervasive developmental disorders.

Practical implications

The high prevalence of substance abuse makes it an important risk factor that could determine treatment outcomes. Forensic intellectual disability units need replicable substance abuse targeted treatment programmes that can be formally audited and evaluated.

Originality/value

Findings are discussed in relation to service planning and treatment outcomes from forensic intellectual disability services.

Details

Journal of Learning Disabilities and Offending Behaviour, vol. 2 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-0927

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Article
Publication date: 30 November 2012

John Devapriam and Regi T. Alexander

Traditionally, services for people with learning disabilities (LD) and forensic needs are underdeveloped. This paper aims to describe the setting up of a tiered model of…

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Abstract

Purpose

Traditionally, services for people with learning disabilities (LD) and forensic needs are underdeveloped. This paper aims to describe the setting up of a tiered model of LD forensic service provision in Leicester, Leicestershire and Rutland, facilitated and driven by a core team of professionals who have the skills and expertise in this area.

Design/methodology/approach

With no dedicated funding, this team is virtual in nature and provides support for the community and in‐patient teams in the assessment and management of offenders with LD. A care pathway including a process map is included to represent a visual idea of the referral, assessment, intervention and disposal strategies across the four tiers of service delivery. The service has a unique partnership arrangement with the independent sector that allows for staff training in order to deliver quality outcomes. The virtual team can support patients with learning disabilities and forensic needs in the community and in‐patient settings, both by avoiding unnecessary in‐patient admissions and by improving the treatment outcomes of those discharged from in‐patient settings.

Findings

Further research is required to demonstrate the clinical and social outcomes for offenders with LD using the tiered model of care and care‐pathway.

Originality/value

The virtual team and the LD forensic care pathway were developed because of a gap in service that was identified as part of a mapping exercise and stakeholder discussion. In the current economic climate, additional resources to address this gap in service may not be readily available; therefore, an innovative way of addressing this gap in service was by developing a care pathway for use by community LD teams based on lean principles and evidence‐based medicine and the pooling of specialist skills to develop the virtual team to enable and support the implementation of the care pathway.

Details

Journal of Learning Disabilities and Offending Behaviour, vol. 3 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2042-0927

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Article
Publication date: 1 May 2002

Regi Alexander, Jack Piachaud, Lola Odebiyi and Satheesh Gangadharan

This survey describes the socio‐demographic, clinical and forensic variables of all patients referred to a medium secure unit in the psychiatry of learning disability. Of…

Abstract

This survey describes the socio‐demographic, clinical and forensic variables of all patients referred to a medium secure unit in the psychiatry of learning disability. Of the sample, 67.5% were referred following an index offence and 76.6% had at least one previous conviction. Just over half (50.6%) came from either prisons, special hospitals or medium secure units and the remainder from mental health/learning disability hospitals or community resources. The majority (91.7%) had prior contact with a mental health or learning disability team. Most (81.5%) had a mild or ‘borderline’ learning disability, 46.8% had either a psychosis or major mood disorder, 58.4% had personality disorders and 56.6% had a history of illicit substance abuse. Of the 79 referrals 29.1% were accepted for admission. Arson as an index offence and a previous conviction for arson were significantly associated with being accepted for admission.

Details

The British Journal of Forensic Practice, vol. 4 no. 2
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 1463-6646

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Article
Publication date: 6 July 2015

Lucinda Cheshire, Verity Chester, Alex Graham, Jackie Grace and Regi T Alexander

There is little published literature about the number of home visits provided to patients within forensic intellectual disability units, and there is no published data on…

Abstract

Purpose

There is little published literature about the number of home visits provided to patients within forensic intellectual disability units, and there is no published data on variables that affect home visits. There is a need for a baseline audit that can formulate standards for future practice. The paper aims to discuss these issues.

Design/methodology/approach

This paper describes the home visit programme within a forensic intellectual disability service, and a baseline audit of the programme. The audit measured the number of home visits, any factors that adversely affect home visits, and the extent of family contact. The authors propose audit standards for evaluation of good practice in this area.

Findings

The audit involved 63 patients over a one-year period. In total, 81 per cent of patients had some form of family contact and 54 per cent of patients at least one home visit. However, 19 per cent of patients had no contact with their family due to a variety of reasons. There were no significant differences in the number of home visits between men and women, patients on civil vs criminal sections or those treated “within area” or “out of area”. Patients in rehabilitation wards had significantly more visits than those in low or medium secure.

Originality/value

Conventional wisdom is that reduced family contact is the direct result of patients being placed “out of area”. The results of this audit suggest that, at least in this group, the reasons may be much more nuanced and that the current definition of “out of area” has to be improved to incorporate the actual distance between the patient’s current family home and the service. Audit standards have been proposed to monitor family contact and home visits. Future work should focus on the relationship between family contact and treatment outcomes.

Details

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol. 9 no. 4
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1282

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Article
Publication date: 1 March 1910

GLASGOW was later by about one hundred and thirty years than some of the Scotch towns in establishing a printing press. Three hundred years ago, though Glasgow contained a…

Abstract

GLASGOW was later by about one hundred and thirty years than some of the Scotch towns in establishing a printing press. Three hundred years ago, though Glasgow contained a University with men of great literary activity, including amongst others Zachary Boyd, there does not appear to have been sufficient printing work to induce anyone to establish a printing press. St. Andrews and Aberdeen were both notable for the books they produced, before Glasgow even attempted any printing.

Details

New Library World, vol. 12 no. 9
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 0307-4803

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Article
Publication date: 5 May 2015

Regi Alexander, John Devapriam, Dasari Michael, Jane McCarthy, Verity Chester, Rahul Rai, Aezad Naseem and Ashok Roy

The purpose of this paper is to describe key policy and practice issues regarding a significant subgroup of people with intellectual disability – those with offending…

Abstract

Purpose

The purpose of this paper is to describe key policy and practice issues regarding a significant subgroup of people with intellectual disability – those with offending behaviour being treated in forensic hospitals.

Design/methodology/approach

The reasons why psychiatrists continue to be involved in the treatment of people with intellectual disability and mental health or behavioural problems and the factors that may lead to patients needing hospital admission are examined. Using two illustrative examples, three key questions – containment vs treatment, hospital care vs conditional discharge and hospital treatment vs using deprivation of liberty safeguards usage in the community are explored.

Findings

Patients with intellectual disability, mental health problems and offending behaviours who are treated within forensic inpatient units tend to have long lengths of stay. The key variable that mediates this length of stay is the risk that they pose to themselves or others. Clinicians work within the framework of mental health law and have to be mindful that pragmatic solutions to hasten discharge into the community may not fall within the law.

Originality/value

This paper makes practical suggestions for the future on how to best integrate hospital and community care for people with intellectual disability, mental health and offending behaviours.

Details

Advances in Mental Health and Intellectual Disabilities, vol. 9 no. 3
Type: Research Article
ISSN: 2044-1282

Keywords

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