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    Coronavirus and people with learning disabilities study: Wave 4 Results: February 2023 (Full Report)

    Hatton, Chris ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-8781-8486, Caton, Susan ORCID logoORCID: https://orcid.org/0000-0001-9013-8721, Bradshaw, Jill, Gillooly, Amanda, Jahdoa, Andrew, Kelly, Rosie, Maguire, Roseann, Oloidi, Edward, Taggart, Laurence, Todd, Stuart and Hastings, Richard (2023) Coronavirus and people with learning disabilities study: Wave 4 Results: February 2023 (Full Report). In: Coronavirus and people with learning disabilities study. Project Report. University of Warwick, Coventry.

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    There are approximately 1.5 million people with learning (intellectual) disabilities across the UK. Throughout the COVID-19 pandemic, data indicated that people with learning disabilities were more likely to contract COVID-19, have a more severe case of COVID-19, and were at least three times more likely than people without learning disabilities to die from COVID-19. People with learning disabilities are a very diverse group; while some people need 24-hour support others have limited or no social care support. Inequalities in health, wellbeing, social isolation, employment and poverty that existed before COVID-19, along with separation from family and friends and changes to routines, may have been exacerbated during the COVID-19 pandemic. User-led organisations, families and social care support providers reported and continue to report multiple challenges associated with social restrictions, maintaining infection control, and the provision of social care support to people and families. There have also been geographical variations in social and health care services’ responses to COVID-19; in terms of both how and whether people receive support. We have written about these issues in earlier reports from the project. Large-scale COVID-19 surveys, with their general population remit, used methods (e.g., online surveys) likely to exclude most people with learning disabilities. Even when these surveys were nationally representative, they did not include sufficient numbers of people with learning disabilities to allow for meaningful analysis across different parts of the UK. They also did not have the flexibility to ask questions of specific relevance to people with learning disabilities. These larger surveys were typically being carried out without the specific resources and expertise that would enable the direct interview methods, with adapted questions and trained interviewers, needed for people with learning disabilities to participate. The project reported here uses these direct interview methods and was designed to systematically and responsively track the experiences of adults with learning disabilities through the COVID-19 pandemic over time across the UK, and investigate swiftly actionable factors associated with better outcomes. For Wave 4 of the project, the research team continued to examine the ongoing impact of the pandemic on the lives of people with learning disabilities in the UK. However, by Wave 4 of the project (the focus in this report), the study also began to look more broadly at the current living circumstances of people with learning disabilities in the UK in the context of a pathway into recession and challenges for public services.

    Impact and Reach


    Activity Overview
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    6 month trend

    Additional statistics for this dataset are available via IRStats2.


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