chapter  8
Co-producing a story of recovery
A Books Beyond Words book group
WithJane Bourne
Pages 13

There are approximately 1.5 million people in the UK who have an intellectual disability (Mental Health Foundation 2018), which is defined by the Department of Health (Department of Health 2009) as a “significant reduced ability to understand new or complex information, to learn new skills (impaired intelligence), with a reduced ability to cope independently (impaired social functioning), which started before adulthood” (p. 14). These individuals are amongst the most socially excluded and mistreated groups in Great Britain, and often need on-going daily support from family, carers and/or support teams. At any one time 40% of adults with an intellectual disability diagnosis also has a mental health difficulty (England.nhs.uk 2017). In 2017, NHS England’s Transforming Care Agenda aimed to change this as they ensured better mental health care in the community and making sure any admissions to hospital were as short as possible. Unfortunately, recent figures from MENCAP (Mencap 2018) still show an inadequacy in community services in terms of both quality and access particularly around integration into communities. This has meant that many people continue to be at risk of the revolving door back to hospital (Gamie 2018).