It is estimated that on an average day in England between 30,000 and 35,000 people with a learning disability, autism or both are taking prescribed psychotropic medication without appropriate clinical justification.
This is medication which results in alterations to perception, mood or consciousness. Long-term use of these medicines puts people at unnecessary risk of a wide range of side effects including weight gain, organ failure and even premature death.
The 2020 Learning Disabilities Mortality Review (LeDeR) report identified that almost a quarter of all people who have died were on an antipsychotic medication, of which 8% were taking two or more of these drugs. This is contra to advice from NICE.
STOMP (Stopping Over Medication of People with a learning disability, autism or both) and STAMP (Supporting Treatment and Appropriate Medication in Paediatrics) are national projects, launched by NHS England and involving many different organisations, aiming to stop the overuse of psychotropic medicines.
VODG had previously led the national roll out of the STOMP programme for social care providers through a national pledge.
More information can be found on the NHS England website.
Health and social care staff play an essential role in delivering the STOMP STAMP agenda. We want to explore this potential and identify opportunities to embed STOMP and STAMP across the health and care workforce, to reduce the reliance on psychotropic medication for people with a learning disability and autistic people.
The objectives of the project are to:
We have appointed a reference group including people with learning disabilities and/or autistic people, families and carers. Their perspectives will shape our approach to gathering evidence and translating findings into practical solutions for specific workforce groups.
We will launch a series of intelligence gathering and engagement activities to hear from a wide range of health and social care professionals. We actively encourage all members of the health and social care workforce who work with people with a learning disability and/or autistic people to support this work and help us all understand the current picture around STOMP and STAMP and identify ways to make improvements.
To find out more and to register your interest in taking part in this project please email [email protected].