Integrating evidence, policy and practice

The second national conference for the Observatory was held on the 16th of May 2017.

Professor Sir Ken Calman, Chancellor of Glasgow University welcomed delegates to the conference which showcased current evidence on the health and healthcare of people with learning disabilities.

The Minister for Mental Health, Mrs Maureen Watt, launched the day by discussing the crucial role the Scottish Learning Disabilities Observatory plays as a strategic delivery partner in implementing the Government's Learning disabilities strategy 'The keys to life'. In reinforcing the Government's ongoing commitment to addressing the health and health care inequalities experienced by people with learning disabilities she said "We want to address population health inequalities and improve access to good quality care. We understand that people with learning disabilities experience substantial health inequalities. Over 95% have at least one additional health problem, and multiple co-occurring physical and mental health problems are typical."

In her presentation Professor Sally-Ann Cooper, Director of the Observatory, reflected on the current state of learning disabilities evidence focussing on where we have come from, where we are now and where we should aim to be in the future.

Chris Hatton, Co-director of the English learning disabilities Observatory then provided a fascinating presentation of seven years of work in the Public Health England learning disabilities observatory.

The programme for the conference is available here

To set the scene for the day we played a short film created by people with learning disabilities and people with autism sharing their experiences of health and health care.


The Observatory team exhibited over 20 posters, these are available to view on this website under each corresponding project.