Autism and learning disabilities care in England – addressing health inequalities, workforce challenges and next steps for policy – 28 Apr 2020

Westminster Health Forum policy conference
28 April 2020 – Central London

with
David Nuttall, Deputy Director, Dementia and Disabilities, DHSC
Dr Kevin Cleary, Deputy Chief Inspector, Hospitals Mental Health and Community Services, CQC
and
Dr Ashok Roy, Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust and Health Education England
Yvonne Newbold, NHS Assembly and Author, The Special Parent’s Handbook
Justin Cooke, Ambitious about Autism
and
Professor Pauline Heslop, University of Bristol and Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme for England; George Matuska, Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust and Councillor Helen Whitehead, Thanet District Council

Chaired by:
Baroness Jolly, Chair, Hft

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Note: fees apply for most delegates, but concessionary and complimentary places are available (subject to terms and conditions – see below).
*If you think this conference would be of interest to colleagues please feel free to share this with them*

As we expect discussion on legal issues, including with the new adults and children autism strategy – as well as discussion on regulation and safety issues as the seminar is expected to follow the Care Quality Commission’s full review of restraint, seclusion and segregation – I thought this might be of interest.

Areas for discussion include:
• Joining up policy across health, social care and education;
• Addressing inequalities and delivering integrated personalised care; and
• Next steps for policy.

Bringing together key stakeholders with policymakers, the seminar comes with a government response expected on the Review of the National Autism Strategy ‘Think Autism’ consultation on proposals to inform a new national cross-government strategy.

The strategy, which is expected to be published later this year, will focus on improving the health, care and wellbeing of autistic people, their families and carers.

Delegates will discuss the way forward for the strategy in extending the priorities listed in the 2014 ‘Think Autism’ strategy to cover children as well as adults.

They will also assess next steps for the Department of Health and Social Care in collaboration with the Department for Education in building communities that are:

• More aware and accessible to needs;
• Promoting local ideas, services and projects; and
• Improving advice and information services.

The agenda looks at the priorities for delivering the new strategy, as well as the progress in implementing goals for learning disabilities and autism in the NHS Long Term Plan.

Delegates will also examine the wider direction of policy and priorities for the new government, looking at the implications and next steps following announcements in the Queen’s Speech, including:

• £74m funding over three years for increased capacity in community care settings for those with learning disabilities and autism;
• Aims to make discharge from hospital easier through reforms to the Mental Health Act and through a National Strategy for Disabled People;
• Commitments to seeking cross-party agreement on the way forward for social care reform; and
• An NHS Funding Bill to deliver funding commitments and the NHS Long Term Plan.

Speakers
There will be keynote contributions from:
• Dr Kevin Cleary, Deputy Chief Inspector, Hospitals Mental Health and Community Services, CQC; and
• David Nuttall, Deputy Director, Dementia and Disabilities, DHSC.

Further confirmed speakers include: Justin Cooke, Ambitious about Autism; Professor Pauline Heslop, University of Bristol and Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme for England; George Matuska, Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust; Yvonne Newbold, NHS Assembly and Author, The Special Parent’s Handbook; Dr Ashok Roy, Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust and Health Education England and Councillor Helen Whitehead, Thanet District Council.

The agenda
• Next steps for delivering the new adults and children’s autism strategy;
• Progress in meeting goals in the NHS Long Term Plan for learning disabilities and autism;
• Assessing the impact of the NHS Long Term Plan and the role of the new strategy – funding, health inequalities and delivering integrated personalised care;
• Priorities for parents, carers and individuals: awareness, support and engagement;
• Workforce education, skills and training – implementing the Autism Core Capabilities Framework;
• Key issues from CQC review into restraint, seclusion and segregation; and
• Integrating health and education policy.

Engagement with policy officials at this conference
This Westminster Health Forum conference has attracted strong interest from policymakers. It will be an opportunity for stakeholders to engage with officials who have reserved places representing: Cabinet Office; DfE; DfT; DHSC; DWP; HMPPS; Home Office; JCP; MHCLG and the MoJ.

The details: areas for discussion at this conference

Policy progress and next steps for delivery
Delegates will look ahead to the new autism strategy, and will also discuss how effective the current strategy has been in improving the health and care of autistic people, their families and carers – as well as achieving its key aims of:
• Measuring, understanding and reporting needs of autistic people;
• Improving workforce development; and
• Encouraging participation in the local community.

With the NHS Long Term Plan including learning disabilities and autism as one of its key clinical priorities, attendees will also examine the progress of implementing measures to:

• Tackle health inequalities;
• Stop over-medication; and
• Ensure more people receive personalised community-based care.

Regulation, safety and opportunities for improving care
The seminar comes following the Department of Health and Social Care announcing case reviews for all inpatients with a learning disability or autism in mental health hospitals.

There will also be discussion on the learning disability mortality review, and the government’s response to it, which set out an action plan to reduce unavoidable and premature deaths.

We are pleased that the lead of the review, Professor Pauline Heslop, is a speaker at this conference.

The seminar is also timed to follow the expected delivery to the DHSC of recommendations from Care Quality Commission’s review of restraint, seclusion and segregation, with the Department already accepting all of the CQC’s recommendations in the interim report – including:

• The development of a new working group to look at new models of care;
• Funding for specialist advocates; and
• A new awareness campaign.

Sessions will consider the opportunities for improving care in learning disability and mental health wards – including staff training, funding for alternative places of care and early intervention to prevent hospital admission.

Workforce, education and training
The agenda includes discussion on what more could be done to educate, train and support the workforce to deliver effective care, following Health Education England’s Autism Core Capabilities Framework for health and care staff.

In light of the government response to the consultation on learning disability and autism training for health and care staff, which set out a number of action points to improve education and training, attendees will assess the challenges of implementing a training and support package that could be rolled out at scale.

Inequalities, community engagement and integrating care
The conference comes as a new NHS Taskforce is set up to improve children’s mental health, learning disabilities and autism care – with a focus on ensuring services are better joined up with schools and councils.

Delegates will discuss challenges for integrating care across health and social care and within education and the community – as well as progress in implementing plans to address the inequality in life expectancy for people with learning disabilities and opportunities for spreading local innovations in care.

Speakers
We are delighted to be able to include in this seminar keynote addresses from: Dr Kevin Cleary, Deputy Chief Inspector, Hospitals Mental Health and Community Services, CQC and David Nuttall, Deputy Director, Dementia and Disabilities, DHSC.

Further confirmed speakers include Justin Cooke, Policy and Public Affairs Manager, Ambitious about Autism; Professor Pauline Heslop, Professor, Intellectual Disabilities Studies, University of Bristol and Programme Manager, Learning Disabilities Mortality Review Programme for England; George Matuska, Learning Disability and Autism Lead, Kent and Medway NHS and Social Care Partnership Trust; Yvonne Newbold, Member, NHS Assembly; Winner, National Learning Disabilities and Autism Lifetime Achievement Award, 2018 and Author, The Special Parent’s Handbook; Dr Ashok Roy, Consultant Psychiatrist, Coventry and Warwickshire Partnership NHS Trust and Clinical Advisor, Health Education England and Councillor Helen Whitehead, Deputy Leader, Thanet District Council and Cabinet Member, Housing and Safer Neighbourhoods.

Baroness Jolly, Chair, Hft has kindly agreed to chair the first half of this seminar.

Booking arrangements
To book places, please use the online booking form.

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