Caring for People with Learning Disabilities: Attitudes and Perceptions of General Nurses

Noronha, Maria T and Pawlyn, Jillian (2019). Caring for People with Learning Disabilities: Attitudes and Perceptions of General Nurses. Learning Disability Practice, 22(3)

DOI: https://doi.org/10.7748/ldp.2019.e1970

Abstract

There is increasing evidence that people with learning disabilities experience high levels of unmet healthcare needs and poor care.

People with learning disabilities admitted to acute and general hospitals are often cared for by general nurses. Sometimes general nurses may have a less positive attitude towards people with learning disabilities and a lack of knowledge of and appropriate training in learning disability awareness.

This article reports findings from a literature review that explored the attitudes and perceptions of general nurses when caring for people with learning disabilities and how these affect the quality of care they provide.

Two themes were identified – the attitudes and perceptions of general nurses and their lack of knowledge of caring for people with learning disabilities. The article describes how these themes affect general nurses’ competence and confidence to care for people with learning disabilities and suggests that education, training and learning disability awareness could address these issues.

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