Rapolu Ramakrishna Murthy (2018), Profiling health information of people with Intellectual Disabilities in multidisciplinary rehabilitation care facility- An analytical study; Presented in the International Conference on Evidence in Global Disability and Health- by London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine & IIPH .
People with Intellectual Disabilities suffer from more physical and mental health problems and often die younger compared to general population. There are many causes like discrimination, less access to health services, diagnostic over shadowing, cognitive and communication disabilities, and challenging behaviours results in severe health vulnerabilities among them. Analysing the available data is crucial in identifying the health needs of people with Intellectual Disabilities. This helps plan better preventive care, design individualised health care programmes, and improve organisational and public policy. This study is an outcome a systematic analysis of the available data in a multipurpose rehabilitation care unit for an academic year; 2016-17. Records of special education and other rehabilitation therapy services are analysed; attendance of each individual as the primary reference point followed by the interviews of special educators and rehabilitation therapists. Of the total 54% shown up low attendance, 46% have one or the significant health problem; 8% suffered from epilepsy, 8% behavioural related problems, 8% GI related illness, 6% thyroid related problems, 4% accidental injuries, 2% Eye infections, 2% Ear infections, 2% dental , 2% obesity and another 4% recurrent fevers of unknown aetiology.
Profiling health problems of people with Intellectual Disabilities helps provide better care, reduce irregularity in receiving rehabilitation services, better acquisition of skills and abilities required for independent living, better Quality of Life of them and their families. Data available in the records of rehabilitation facility and interviews of rehabilitation professionals are the important sources of information to analyse and understand the severity and type of health problems of the people with Intellectual Disabilities. Organisations engaged in disability rehabilitation can take up this activity periodically. A structured surveillance system in rehabilitation organisations to track the health of persons with intellectual disabilities is suggested.