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    People with intellectual disabilities have a lower life expectancy and more frequent comorbidities than the general population and have unmet health needs. Insufficient medical care is suspected to be one reason, for which little data is available in Germany. The study therefore focuses on the question of how people with intellectual disabilities make use of medical care, including screening and preventive measures. In a cross-sectional study in 3 workshops for people with intellectual disabilities, the use of health care was surveyed by means of questionnaires from their relatives. The evaluation was carried out descriptively and by means of inferential statistics comparing participants with the general population as well as within the group of participants for socio-demographic differences. Almost all 181 participants (participation rate 19.3%) had a family doctor. In comparison to the general population, the participants made more frequent use of the services of general practitioners and the care provided by numerous other specialist areas. They made less frequent use of screening for colon, breast, cervix and prostate and more frequent use for skin cancer and general check-up. Dental check-ups and preventive measures showed no difference. Participants living in institutional settings made more use of the regular services than those living with relatives or alone. Participants with a migration background were less aware of care services. The results do not show any indications of a general undersupply of health care. Participation in cancer screening with more complex examinations should be encouraged, especially for people with mental disabilities living alone or with relatives. Those with a migration background and their families should be specifically informed. Thieme. All rights reserved.


    Randi Wellkamp, Werner de Cruppé, Susanne Schwalen, Max Geraedts. Health Care Use by Intellectually Disabled People: A Cross-Sectional Study in three Sheltered Workshops]. Gesundheitswesen (Bundesverband der Arzte des Offentlichen Gesundheitsdienstes (Germany)). 2022 May;84(5):457-465

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    PMID: 33890264

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