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Parents urged to get young people with learning disabilities registered for an annual health check

Monday 23rd November 2020


Parents are reminded to get their young people added to the GP learning disability register so they do not miss out on their annual health check. 

Studies show people with learning disabilities have poorer physical and mental health than other people and die younger. Many of these deaths are avoidable.  

Latest research also shows people with learning disabilities are at greater risk if they get corona virus

Contact is working with NHS England, parent carer forums and families to help boost the number of young people on GP learning registers so they can be invited for the check. 

Currently only 53% of people with learning disabilities are having the health check they are entitled to. 

We have produced a set of Frequently Asked Questions and Answers, to help families navigate the registration and health check process. 

Amanda Elliot, Contact's strategic health lead, said parents should not let the current pandemic put them off asking their GP to provide annual check for their young person. 

"Research shows this pandemic has made it more important than ever for people with learning disabilities to get extra help to stay healthy.

"Yearly health checks mean GPs can detect and treat any health problems early, and make sure your young person is up to date with their vaccinations. 

"Regular health checks help young people and their carers to get familiar with attending GP appointments. And even better, it helps the GP get to know your child's needs. Don't forget your child has a right for reasonable adjustments to enable them to attend the appointment." 

All young people with a learning disability from their 14th birthday are invited for free annual health check provided by their GP, if they are on the practice learning disability register. Parents can ask for the child to be added to the practice learning disability register at any age.

Find out more about registering your child and the Annual Health Check process from our Frequently Asked Questions and Answers.

Families can ask GP surgeries to make reasonable adjustments and provide easy read information to help their young person access the jab. 

See more here on reasonable adjustments and advice from us on making GP surgeries more welcoming for disabled children and their families.