Recent policy documents relating to people with learning disabilities have proposed that they be more fully included in generic mental health care provision. In practice such inclusion has been slow to proceed, hampered by factors which appear to include lack of knowledge and confidence on the part of generic mental health practitioners. Policy documents have also recommended training of practitioners by people with learning disabilities, which has been found to impact positively on confidence and attitudes. This study reports on a training session delivered to ‘Improving Access to Psychological Therapies’ practitioners by a service user with learning disabilities who has accessed mental health services, together with a clinical psychologist and an honorary assistant psychologist. The practitioners were asked to rate their knowledge about and confidence in working with people with learning disabilities before and after the training. Participants rated themselves as having significantly greater knowledge and confidence following the training, and many of the qualitative reasons given for these changes mentioned the contribution of the service user. This paper includes details of her particular contribution to the training, together with her reflections on the experience of joint training, given in an interview with the assistant psychologist. It is concluded that joint training needs to be developed and its impact further researched.
How to Cite
Heneage, C., Morris, D. & Dhanjal, K., (2010) “Nothing About Us Without Us: Combining Professional Knowledge with Service User Experience in Training about Mental Health and Learning Disabilities”, Mental Health and Learning Disabilities Research and Practice 7(2). doi: https://doi.org/10.5920/mhldrp.2010.72119