Change that leads to better lives

Making reasonable adjustments to cancer screening

People with learning disabilities have significantly higher rates of mortality and morbidity than their non-disabled peers.4-6 Whilst the incidence of deaths from most cancers in the UK among people with learning disabilities is currently lower than the general population, this is likely to change in the coming years as a result of their increased their longevity.

People with learning disabilities have proportionally higher rates of gastrointestinal cancer,7-9 and children with Down’s syndrome are at particularly high risk of leukaemia. Research has highlighted deficiencies in relation to breast cancer screening for women with learning disability.12 People with learning disabilities with cancer are less likely to: be informed of their diagnosis and prognosis; be given pain relief; be involved in decisions about their care and are less likely to receive palliative care

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