Evaluation of a learning disability liaison nurse service
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Evaluation of a learning disability liaison nurse service

Jonathan Gray Lecturer and honorary consultant nurse (NHS Highland), University of the Highlands and Islands, Inverness, Scotland
Val Watson Learning disability liaison nurse, NHS Highland, Inverness, Scotland

Learning disability liaison nurses can ensure that people with learning disabilities receive high-quality care in hospital. This article reports the findings from an evaluation of a learning disability liaison nurse service. Over a five-year period 750 referrals were received. Of these, 387 (52%) were women and the mean age of those referred was 46 years. People with severe/profound learning disabilities tended to be younger when referred. Most referrals were to the medical department and the mean length of stay for those admitted was 8.6 days. The main source of referral has changed over time with hospital staff being the main source of referrals for the past three years. Around 95% of people referred were recorded as having a successful completion of their care episode.

This evaluation contributes to the evidence base for these specialist roles. It provides a longer-term view of patterns of referral and the characteristics of people with learning disabilities who have been supported by the liaison nurse.

Learning Disability Practice. 20, 5, 35-41. doi: 10.7748/ldp.2017.e1861



Conflict of interest


Peer review

This article has been subject to double-blind peer review and checked for plagiarism using automated software

Received: 10 April 2017

Accepted: 15 June 2017

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