Understanding the Role of Care Staff in Supporting Individuals With an Intellectual Disability Who Take Psychotropic Medication

Prof Doc Thesis

Wrein, D. 2019. Understanding the Role of Care Staff in Supporting Individuals With an Intellectual Disability Who Take Psychotropic Medication. Prof Doc Thesis University of East London School of Psychology https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.87570
AuthorsWrein, D.
TypeProf Doc Thesis

Intellectual disability services are under constant change with Transforming Care being the latest UK policy aimed to improve services. The STOMP agenda forms part of this, as a call to action against the overmedication of people with intellectual disabilities. Recent service policy has come about following exposés of scandals where support workers have been found to be abusing the people they are paid to support. Despite these findings and the intimate role support workers have with people with intellectual disability, there is a paucity of research to understand this unique role. In response, this study aimed to develop a model that could conceptualise the role of support workers in caring for people with intellectual disability that take psychotropic medication. Constructivist grounded theory from a pragmatist position, which complements the research aim and questions of this study was carried out. The “negotiating dis/ability” model was constructed using interview data from support workers who had experience of working with people with intellectual disability who take psychotropic medication. “Disablement” and “ablement” were dominant processes for support workers negotiating a (medication) role in their relationships with others in the system. Support worker’s “dis/ablement” was constructed of a broader ableism that permeates throughout intellectual disability services. This study demonstrated how current interventions “disable” others through individualising problems within the support worker as well as the person with intellectual disability; taking a radical systemic approach may help to counter these narratives and lead to better outcomes, including more successful medication reductions.

PublisherUniversity of East London
Digital Object Identifier (DOI)https://doi.org/10.15123/uel.87570
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Publication dates
OnlineMay 2019
Publication process dates
Deposited05 Dec 2019
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License: CC BY-NC-ND 4.0
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