Helping young adults with neurodevelopmental disabilities: IRCM ethics experts study the transition from paediatric to adult health care services
By: CNW: A PR NEWSWIRE COMPANY, 3 Feb 2014
Accessed on: 3 Feb 2014
Commentary by: Krystal Glowatski
I am posting a second news blog this week. I think it’s a timely piece to complement the interview on Regina Community Radio 91.3 FM CJTR, Listen Up program that aired live on Tuesday, February 4. While Cheryl Charron and Karen Cooper of the Regina Community Clinic touched on a broad range of topics relating to FASD, they are indeed a health clinic, likely helping clients face challenges such as the ones in this article.
Those of you who work in FASD client services and support sectors will be interested to read this. I know from speaking with professionals working with FASD clients, that the transition from child/youth to adult status is difficult for clients in many regards, such as health care, financial supports, and assumed independence. This article outlines the difficulties experienced in terms of the health care transition. In other words, clients with FASD move from a paediatric health care setting into an adult health care system in which privacy is revered, appointments must be kept, and guardians are left standing on the sidelines with little to no ability to help the person with neurodevelopmental challenges.
As Dr. Racine, Director of the Neuroethics research unit at the IRCM contends, “Health care transition is a crucial process in the lives of youth with neurodevelopmental disabilities and their parents… Transition challenges are likely to be greater among these adolescents because of the complexity of their health care needs and the stigma associated with physical and intellectual disabilities that may accompany their disorders. Some individuals believe they were suddenly removed from paediatric care and thrust into a foreign system for which they had not been adequately prepared.”
The authors of the study go on to discuss their recommendations for amending this situation. One such suggestion is to allow flexibility in the age requirement for transition from child to adult health care systems such that the individual is sufficiently developmentally prepared for that transition, as opposed to forcing the transition based on an arbitrary age.
This research was funded by the Canadian Institutes of Health Research and the Fonds de recherche du Québec – Santé. To access the academic journal article please visit: http://www.pulsus.com/journals/abstract.jsp?sCurrPg=abstract&jnlKy=5&atlKy=12663&isuKy=1192&isArt=t&fromfold=Current+Issue&fold=Abstract