Annual Health Checks & GP Learning Disability Registers
GP Learning Disability Register
People with a learning disability can get extra support from their GP and other health services by being on the GP Learning Disability Register. The GP Learning Disability Register is an all age list of people registered at that GP Practice who have a learning disability. The register then alerts the GP they have a learning disability so they can put the appropriate support in place for that person and invite them to the relevant check-ups they are entitled too. This might mean:
- Reasonable adjustments such as longer appointments, quieter waiting rooms, appointments at certain times of the day, support to successfully access health interventions such as immunisations, screening, blood tests, etc
- Information in accessible format
- Offered an Annual Health Check from age 14+
- Offered a free flu vaccination
By informing the GP Practice a person has a learning disability it means they can provide better support for that person. They can also share the information with other health professionals who may need to support them so they can also provide the reasonable adjustments and support they might need.
It’s really important to ensure your child or young person with a learning disability is on the register, even if they are mainly cared for by the Paediatrician. This is because it allows the GP Practice to know the child has a learning disability at the earliest opportunity and to build a relationship with the child or young person before they transition in to adult services. It also means they can access their Annual Health Check age 14+, Dr Jim Gordon explains why it is important here. You can find out if your child or young person is on the register by contact your GP, if they aren’t on please ask them to add them to it.
Mencap are running a campaign called Don’t Miss Out about making sure people check they are on the GP Learning Disability Register. A range of resources and more information about this can be found here.
Annual Health Checks
Anybody on the GP Learning Disability Register age 14+ is entitled to an Annual Health Check. People with a learning disability have poorer health outcomes and Annual Health Checks help early identify any health needs a person may have.
Every year a person is invited by their GP Practice and it might include things like:
- Physical check up e.g. height, weight, blood pressure, blood test, urine sample etc
- Talk about any concerns a person may have
- Provide support with medication
- Provide support with immunisations
- Provide support with any other long-term conditions
- Overall support with health and wellbeing
You can watch this short film about Annual Health Checks and why they are important here.
Annual Health Checks are normally face to face appointments with your GP but during Covid19 these might be over the phone instead. The North East and Cumbria Learning Disability Network have developed a pre-questionnaire to support you and GP Practices in carrying out Annual Health Checks during this time. You can find a copy of the questionnaire here:
Your GP Practice might have already sent you this to complete if your child or young person is due their Annual Health Check.
Please note not all parts of the Annual Health Check will be relevant for your child or young person and these parts will not be discussed or need to be completed.
If your child or young person is over age 14+ and hasn’t had their Annual Health Check in the last 12 months please follow this up with your GP Practice and check they are on the GP Learning Disability Register.
More information about Annual Health Checks can be found on the NHS England website here.
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