the development and use of a personal health resource
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the development and use of a personal health resource

Elizabeth Scott Assistant Psychologist, Northgate Hospital, Northgate and Prudhoe NHS Trust
Jennifer Elvish Assistant Psychologist, Northgate Hospital, Northgate and Prudhoe NHS Trust
Lala Luft Consultant Clinical Psychologist, Newcastle Community Learning Disability Team, Northgate and Prudhoe NHS Trust
Moira Wilson Community Nurse, Newcastle Community Learning Disability Team, Northgate and Prudhoe NHS Trust

To help tackle the problem of unmet health needs among people with learning disabilities a health book was devised to provide a flexible and accessible record of a person’s health status. Using the results of a pilot study, Elizabeth Scott and colleagues assess how useful the health book proved to be to services users, carers and health professionals

Health is a broadly defined concept, incorporating physical, psychological and social components. It is about being able to live an optimum quality of life and adapt to personal environmental and social circumstances (Naidoo and Wills 1994). Meeting health needs is problematic in the general population (Department of Health (DH) 2001), however, people with learning disabilities may face additional challenges in maintaining an optimum state of health due to a combination of factors. For example, people with learning disabilities may have a reduced ability to understand information in a complex fashion or may have reduced opportunities to learn about healthy lifestyles. In addition, they may be unable to recognise causes of illnesses and to take preventative actions (DH 1995).

Learning Disability Practice. 8, 2, 27-31. doi: 10.7748/ldp2005.03.8.2.27.c1610

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