Reducing Readmissions: New Guidelines Aim to Help Serve People with IDDs
Sharing an article today that provides strategies to help reduce readmissions for individuals with IDD. These are practices we as START teams employ regularly, but this provides a nice summary page of them. It is important to note that these specific guidelines are based on anecdotal practice and are not from evidence-based research.
The new guidelines, geared toward reducing the incidence of readmission for children with intellectual disabilities, including autism, include four critical steps mental health caregivers, therapists and social workers need to take before discharging children and adolescents from psychiatric facilities. These guidelines include the following:
- Screen for any other medical issues that could be contributing to the emotional or behavioral health problems. For example, is physical pain from an injury contributing to increased aggression?
- Evaluate the individual’s communication and sensory challenges. For example, does the person have impaired ability to speak, or do they suffer from impaired hearing?
- The treatment setting needs to be conducive to those with ASDs or IDDs. In other words, nonverbal communication methods should be top priorities when caring for those hospitalized.
- All staff needs comprehensive, updated training on caring for those with ASDs and IDDs. Every staff members needs to know how to work with those with IDDs, including de-escalation tactics and strategies for social learning. Adequate training is the most important practice included in these new guidelines.
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Mission: The UNH/IOD Center for START (Systemic, Therapeutic, Assessment, Resources, and Treatment) Services aims to improve the lives of persons with IDD and behavioral health needs and their families through fidelity to the START model with exemplary services and supports that emphasize local, person-centered, positive, multidisciplinary, cost-effective and evidence-informed practices.