Working in partnership

Working in partnership with children, young people and adults who have a learning disability and behaviour that challenges, and their family members or carers, and:

  • Involving them in decisions about care is key
  • Helping to support self-management and encourage the person to be independent
  • Building on and maintaining  a continuing, trusting and non-judgemental relationship
  • It is important to be able to provide information:
    • about the nature of the person’s needs, and the range of interventions (for example, environmental, psychological and pharmacological interventions) and services available to them
    • it is important that the format and language is appropriate to the person’s cognitive and developmental level (including spoken and picture formats, and written versions in Easy Read style and different colours and fonts)
    • to develop a shared understanding about the function of the behaviour
  • to help family members and carers to provide the level of support they feel able to.

When providing support and interventions for people with a learning disability and behaviour that challenges, and their family members or carers:

  • take into account the severity of the person’s learning disability, their developmental stage, and any communication difficulties or physical or mental health problems (see what NICE says on multimorbidity)
  • aim to provide support and interventions:
    • in the least restrictive setting, such as the person’s home, or as close to their home as possible, and
    • in other places where the person regularly spends time (for example, school or residential care)
    • aim to prevent, reduce or stop the development of future episodes of behaviour that challenges
    • aim to improve quality of life
    • offer support and interventions respectfully
    • ensure that the focus is on improving the person’s support and increasing their skills rather than changing the person
    • ensure that they know who to contact if they are concerned about care or interventions, including the right to a second opinion
    • offer independent advocacy to the person and to their family members or carers.