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Building Awareness in Your Site

Adults with developmental disabilities (DD) make up a small percentage of patients who visit your emergency department. But within Ontario, adults with DD are disproportionately high users of the emergency departments. They visit the ED more often than people with serious mental illnesses and adults older than 65 without DD.
Before an improvement intiative is put in place, take a pulse of the awareness and receptivity among your colleagues towards patients with DD.
Click the links below for resources to help you get started:

What the Research Says

Use this PowerPoint slide deck to share the evidence on health disparities among people with DD.

Sample Process Map 

This one page visual provides a sample overview of the intervention.

Key Ingredients for a Successful Initiative

In this document we share some strategies and encourage you to think of unique strategies for your site.

Staff Engagement Survey

This survey includes questions for staff in your ED about perceived comfort, skills, and attitudes, as well as knowledge and health issues of adults with DD and exisintg resources. This could act as a baseline measures if there is interest in capturing any pre-post data.

Sample Role Descriptions and Interdisciplinary Opportunities

Examples of interdisciplinary opportunities - This is not a prescriptive list but could be used as an example for tailoring, depending on the capacities and interest at your site. 

"I Am" Awareness Campaign

You can use these posters as a series or pick a few - Hang them in the clinic, staff, or use them in presentations. This campaign was created for the H-CARDD project and features individuals with DD from Ontario describing their health care experiences. You can also invite patients from your community to participate in this initiative and create new posters. 

DD and Health Posters

This series of posters contains knowledge and information on common health issues related to adults with DD. These can be posted sequentially, or as a whole series. They can also be sent around in the body of an email as part of an awareness raising campaign. 

Email Campaign 

To keep your improvement initiative visible, we suggest that you consider consistent communication to your team. Consider images or bullets of information.