On January 27th 2015 in Cardiff, a group of clinicians from health and local authority will be hosting a Community of Practice around services for people with Profound and Multiple Leaning Disabilities (PMLD). Helen Thomas, Lead Occupational Therapist at Aneurin Bevan University Health Board blogs here about she would love you to join and explore the issues across Wales for people with PMLD and their carers, creating a groundswell of opinion around good practice and service provision. Book your place here.
A good starting point would be perhaps to outline the matter in hand and list the characteristics, needs and disabilities that make up the population of people with PMLD – which would include having a profound learning disability, needing high levels of support, great difficulty communicating and so on. A therapist might reference the complexity and the range of health, social and third sector services locally and across Wales and then talk about the sheer frustration and drudgery of trying to get funding for equipment, lack of accessible facilities and high levels of skilled support required. Local authority staff may stress the importance of providing personal support and care, but recognise the lack of opportunity for exploring person centred activity and choices. Talk to a carer/parent and they would likely say about the daily grind of poor access to specialist equipment and therapies, lack of cohesion between services, delays and waiting for assessment and provision, and the footfall over their thresholds of a range of professionals that vary and change at a scary rate.