26 September 2023

SAIDHS on hand for people with disability

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South Australians with intellectual disabilities are to have better access to appropriate and timely health care with the launch of a new Statewide service.

Announced by the Minister for Health and Wellbeing, Stephen Wade the South Australian Intellectual Disability Health Service (SAIDHS) aims to reduce avoidable ED presentations and hospital admissions by ensuring South Australians with intellectual disabilities have access to more appropriate and timely care.

“People with intellectual disabilities experience twice the rate of Emergency Department presentations and hospital admissions than other Australians,” Mr Wade said.

“People with intellectual disability are entitled to high quality health care that meets their needs and supports them to lead healthy and active lives, which is exactly where SAIDHS will assist,” he said.

Mr Wade said the SAIDHS, led by the Northern Adelaide Local Health Network (NALHN), would replace the Centre for Disability Health (CDH) at the Ingle Farm Recreation Centre, with the implementation of a new Model of Care.

He said the site had undergone a number of physical changes including increasing the size of consult rooms, improving wheelchair accessibility and upgrading fittings and furniture to provide visitors with a calm, comfortable, low stimulus environment to receive care.

Chief Executive Officer for the NALHN, Maree Geraghty said SAIDHS would provide services for adults with intellectual disabilities, significant developmental disabilities and complex health care needs.

“SAIDHS will offer consumers access to world-class care from NALHN physicians, psychiatrists, psychologists, occupational therapists, nurses, speech pathologists and other allied health professionals,” Ms Geraghty said.

She said referrals to SAIDHS could be made through a GP or other medical specialist.

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