Strengthening the Commitment: Living the commitment

This report celebrates the achievements of learning disability nurses across the United

Kingdom and the difference they have made, and continue to make, to the lives and health

outcomes of people with learning disabilities


Strengthening the Commitment set out our vision of how learning disability nurses could expand their role to ensure that people with learning disabilities are treated with dignity and respect and receive the care and support they need. In the changing world of health and social care services the role of learning disability nurses is pivotal to achieving this vision. In the past three years a tremendous amount has been achieved in all four countries as learning disability nurses have expanded their skills, knowledge and competencies, developed measurable outcomes and evidence-based interventions, have significantly strengthened their research skills, and are creating a critical mass of leaders to effect further change.

These achievements have only been possible because of the clear commitment to implementation of the recommendations in Strengthening the Commitment across all four countries and the leadership shown within each country. We are proud of the great strides that have been made to improve the lives of people with learning disabilities and to ensure that their needs are kept firmly on the health and social care agenda. This report identifies these achievements and celebrates the innovative and successful work that is going on across the United Kingdom led by learning disability nurses working across a range of settings. Our congratulations and thanks to each and every professional who has made such a significant contribution to this work.

The population of people with learning disabilities continues to increase as children born with a learning disability live longer, more fulfilled lives and adults grow into older age. As a consequence, the support of learning disability nurses is even more vital across the age range and in all settings. Learning disability nurses play a vital role in reducing the health inequalities that have all too often been experienced by people with learning disabilities.

'Health services need to understand that people with profound and complex learning disabilities often have multiple health needs so won't fit into generic health structures where one need is addressed at a time, issues need to be tackled collectively. Looking holistically is a key skill of a learning disability nurse.'
Carer, mother of adults with learning disabilities

Despite the great achievements made in the past three years, there remains much to be done. We are busy identifying the next steps in our journey and will be true to our commitment to improve the lives of people with learning disabilities through strengthening the role of the key professionals who work with them to make sure they have better lives.

photograph of Jane Cummings

Jane Cummings
Chief Nursing Officer

photograph of Fiona McQueen

Fiona McQueen
Chief Nursing Officer

photograph of Charlotte McArdle

Charlotte McArdle
Chief Nursing Officer Northern Ireland

photograph of Jean White

Jean White
Chief Nursing Officer

June 2015


Email: Scott Taylor

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