What do we mean by complex needs?
People with learning disabilities will sometimes have multiple conditions that co-exist, overlap and interlock to create a complex profile. These conditions can mean that they present with a range of issues and combination of needs that affect their: –
- mental health
- ability to form and manage relationships
- physical appearance
- sensory input
- communication ability
- cognitive ability
These needs often interact in ways that are specific to the individual, and therefore challenging to diagnose or treat. Where someone’s needs aren’t being understood, complex needs can present as challenging behaviour, resulting in services not being delivered in a way that meets the person’s needs.
Specialist person-centred support can help individuals to engage effectively and to participate meaningfully in the wider community.
Why is this important to Hft?
Services in both health and social care have been unable to cope with the rising demand from people with complex needs and behaviours that challenge. Community placement breakdowns still occur, and out of area placements are increasingly used as a solution. These placements can be very costly despite the fact that they are often of poor quality and may be institutionalised.
People who are born with complex needs are now more likely to live into adulthood, and have a greater life expectancy. This means both that services are required by more and more people, and that those in receipt of services require them for longer.
In addition, people not previously in receipt of services may require a service as their parent or carer becomes older and less able to support them. It is also apparent that while some areas are able to provide respite care to support families, this is not consistent across the UK.
Operational managers and planners of services for people with learning disabilities who have high complex needs, recognise the need for more effective community services across the health, social care and independent sectors to develop robust ways of providing care and support while enabling inclusive lives.
What can be done?
People with learning disabilities are leading longer, healthier lives. Support models such as Hft’s Fusion Model of Support allow for a holistic approach to supporting individuals with complex needs, using innovative methods such as Personalised Technology to provide as bespoke a care service as possible. Critically, organisations need to invest in their staff, providing specialist training to help them support people with complex needs and behaviours that challenge.
At Hft, we support and empower individuals with a wide range of learning disabilities. We recognise that people may also have other complex needs which mean that they require adapted environments or specialist ways of working in order for them to live a meaningful life.
What difference does this make?
People with learning disabilities, their families and local authority commissioners can have confidence in Hft as a provider that is good at supporting people with complex needs in a variety of different settings. Our Fusion Model of Support ensures that we keep the people we support at the heart of everything we do, focused on making sure that everyone has the opportunity to live the best life possible for them.
Find out more about the services we offer in your area, and give us a call today.