Approximately 3% of the world’s population have ID and/or ASD, this will include Australia. ID/ASD can have a profound impact on a person’s social, cognitive or mental functioning, requiring high levels of costly healthcare and social support. Therefore, it is imperative that such interventions and services received are based upon a sound evidence-base. However, most interventions within this field have not been based upon a sound theoretical framework and a robust evidence-base. Barriers to translating this research knowledge into practice not only include individual but also organisational/systems factors:

Recently, there have been a small number of promising theoretically underpinned health interventions that have been tested via randomised controlled trials to improve the health of this population (Step Up, Weight 5, Walk Well). Despite such positive results, translating this research evidence into clinical practice will continue to remain challenging if we do not understand that it is the organizations/systems that are complex, and not research. We therefore need to be able to undertake research to develop the evidence, that then can be successfully translated into practice thereby overcoming these organizations/systems barriers. In this keynote, we will look at a new innovative way to co-develop and co-design research with service users with ID/ASD, their carers and frontline staff within such organizations/systems using a ‘Logic Model’.


Laurence Taggart
(International) Centre for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and the Autism Research Hub, Ulster University

Biography: Dr Laurence Taggart is a Reader, and leads the Centre for Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities and the Autism Research Hub at Ulster University. Laurence is the current Chair of the Health Specialist Interest Research Group of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD) and was until Dec 2016, President of the Royal Society of Medicine Intellectual Disability Forum. He is the Expert Advisor for the National Institute of Clinical Excellence (NICE) Guideline for older adults with an intellectual disability in the UK.

Laurence’s main research interests focus on the health of people with intellectual disabilities (i.e. health inequalities, inequities and health promotion), the use of technology to improve health, computer interface and knowledge transfer. He has received funding of over £3.3 million from a range of national competitive funders (incl. NIHR, ESRC) to complete research projects aimed at transferring research knowledge into practice in the field of intellectual and developmental disabilities. He has published over 100 articles and chapters and is the co-editor of ‘Health Promotion for People with Intellectual & Developmental’ Disabilities’ (2014) .


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