25 November 2019

Themes including improving population health and how to support LGBTQ+ service users were discussed at the 2019 Trust-wide Learning Disability Conference.

It was held at the Friends House in Euston on Thursday 21 November and opened by Chief Executive Dr Navina Evans.

The interactive forum saw 180 delegates from Trust LD, Forensic and Autism Diagnostic Services across Bedfordshire, Luton, Newham, Tower Hamlets and City & Hackney gather to discuss topics including strategic service development, equality of care and challenging behavior pathways.

The conference included a performance from the Include Choir.

The inclusive choir is for people with and without communication or learning disabilities. The choir uses Makaton sign, objects of reference and other inclusive communication techniques to help people understand and take part.

Updates on the work to create employment opportunities for people who have a Learning Disability and creating a People Participation (PP) Lead for LD services were also shared.

The conference was hosted by Clinical Director for LD services, Dr Sanjay Nelson and Ruth Klawza, Strategic Lead for Learning Disability and Autism, Services for People who have a Learning Disability.

“The annual conference is a tremendous opportunity for us all to celebrate some fantastic achievements from the last year and to focus on our challenges for the next,” said Ruth.

“We discussed some diverse themes and had wonderful speakers. I would like to thank everyone involved.” said Sanjay

External speakers included:

  • Dr Ken Courtenay, Consultant Psychiatrist & Chair, Faculty of Intellectual Disability, Royal College of Psychiatrists
  • Professor Irene Tuffrey-Wijne from Kingston University & St George’s University of London
  • Dr Regi Alexander Consultant Psychiatrist & Interim Clinical Director (LD & Forensic SBU), Hertfordshire Partnership University NHS Foundation Trust
  • Clare Arnold, Professional Lead/Clinical Manager-Community Learning, North Tyneside
  • Donna Cuthbertson, Primary Care/Mental Health Liaison Nurse, Northumberland
  • Melanie Dickinson, Professional Lead Nurse – Learning Disability Acute Liaison, Northumbria Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust
  • The Springwell Project
  • Jen Taylor Watt - QI Advisor

The conference included updates from the community LD Teams and the event itself was supported by key team members.

The conference was closed by Trust Vice Chair Mary Elford.