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About this book

If you are looking for an incisive overview of current thinking and practice in the field of learning disabilities, then this is the book for you.

Written by a highly experienced team of authors, this handy pocket-sized guide succinctly captures the fundamental ideas in policy and practice that currently dominate the field of learning disabilities.

With a strong grounding in ethics and values, the book focuses on the experience of people with learning disabilities through examination of topics such as discrimination, communication and assistive technology, as well as promoting readers' understanding of key areas such as care planning, accommodation and application of the Human Rights Act 1998.

With explicit 'Implications for Practice' points and extensive signposting to further reading, A-Z of Learning Disabilities is an essential resource not only for students and practitioners in learning disability nursing or social work, but also teachers, policymakers, families and anyone who lives with, or whose work brings them into contact with, people who have learning disabilities.

Table of Contents


Historically most people with learning disabilities have lived at home with their parents. During the late 19th and for most of the 20th century, many were admitted to long-stay hospitals in isolated areas with little if any access to their families and communities. The hospital closure programme of the 1980s and 1990s resulted in people being returned to their local communities with many people ‘resettled’ in four to six-bedded houses in the same local authority as their families. Resettlements were usually managed by multi-agency resettlement teams including nurses, social workers and occupational therapists who tried to ensure that people lived with other residents or tenants that they were compatible with. In reality, the speed of the hospital closure programme led to people moving from large rural institutions to small urban institutions to spend the rest of their lives with people with whom they had little in common.
Angela Olsen, Dan Redfearn, Andrea Pepe
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