Day 43: Death by indifference #WeLDNs #107days

Today was adopted by @WeLDNurses for the second of three web-chats as part of #107days campaign. The first one took place on Day 15 and focused on epilepsy management; it was fast paced and brilliant, personal learning points are make a brew before the start and don’t worry too much about trying to keep up! Just jump in, as and when you can. The chat was facilitated by Sam and there is a transcript of the chat here.

Today’s chat takes place at 8:30pm and is focusing on death by indifference. If you visit the chat page you can read more about the background, and there’s also a link to a WeNurses guide in case you’ve never joined in a webchat before. There’s a great introduction by tonight’s facilitator, Sally, and I’ve cherry picked some of it for this post:

In the wake of Winterbourne View, South Staffs and the delivery of the Confidential Inquiry into Premature Deaths of People with Learning Disabilities (CIPOLD) the question on the lips of Team @WeLDNurses is: How Many More Times Do We Have To Do This Chat?

If people with learning disabilities are dying avoidably in specialist services, do we need to start there in terms of improving safety and identifying early warning signs and how we respond to them?

I have no doubt that the vast majority of health professionals want to do their best for the people in their care, but there have been too many recent failures to ignore. We have to take action. Now.

Our chat on Thursday will be discussing ways in which we can all take action, as individual practitioners, through organisations to primary care, to commissioners and secondary care leads and of course third sector providers.

We hope you can join us to share your views and experiences, and to discuss how we can all take action to avoid preventable deaths of people with learning disabilities.


Yesterday, Day 42, was adopted by Phil, a Registered Nurse for People with Learning Disabilities, and you can read his post here if you missed it. I’m going to take the liberty of repeating myself and the intro here:

As I sat drafting this post this morning I was reflecting on how strong the grass roots/frontline/on the ground response has been to #107days and #JusticeforLB. Amongst the families, carers, dudes, researchers, advocates, activists and academics who have stepped up, along with many more, there is one professional group who (personal view here) have really risen to the challenge of learning from what happened to LB. That’s not to say they’re the only group, and I’m not singling them out as favourites, rather acknowledging that as a professional group, nurses of people with learning disabilities, could have responded with anger, or shame, or disbelief, or avoidance, or many other ways. Instead many learning disability nurses have embraced our campaign and fully supported it.

On a day where poor care of people will yet again be exposed by Panorama, I wanted to just acknowledge how heartening it is to know that people working in these roles do care. That doesn’t take away from the abuse or neglect demonstrated by a few, at the frontline (and personal view again here) or at CEO level, but it is worth remembering the many, many people who are providing good care and seeking to learn from LB’s death. 

Please join us, and @WeLDNurses, professionals who are taking responsibility and seeking to improve things, tonight for our chat. Thank you #WeLDNs #JusticeforLB 8:30pm.