Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training on Learning Disability and Autism
What is the Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training on Learning Disability and Autism?
The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training on Learning Disability and Autism was launched by Health Education England (now NHS England) in November 2022. Following Oliver’s death after being given antipsychotic medication despite warnings that they were unsuitable for him, Oliver’s mother Paula successfully campaigned to make training on caring for people with a learning disability and autistic people mandatory for all health and care staff.
The training is designed to upskill the workforce to provide appropriately adjusted care for people with a learning disability and autistic people to better support them and meet their needs. The training programme has been co-developed by NHS England, the Department of Health and Social Care and Skills for Care with expertise from people with a learning disability and autistic people, as well as their families and carers.
The launch of the training followed a two-year trial which involved 8,300 health and care staff across England. Participants reported an increase in their knowledge, skills and communication with autistic people and people with a learning disability after completing the training.
The Health and Care Act 2022 introduced a requirement that CQC-registered service providers must ensure their staff receive training on learning disability and autism that is appropriate to their role.
The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training is the government’s preferred and recommended training for health and social care staff.
The programme of training comes in two tiers and is designed so staff receive the right level of training. Tier 1 has been designed for staff who require general awareness of the support autistic people or people with a learning disability may need, while Tier 2 is for those who may need to provide care and make more complex care decisions. Further guidance for employers on which of their staff should undertake each of the tiers can be found at the following link: The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training on Learning Disability and Autism: Tier guidance for employers (hee.nhs.uk)
The first part of both tiers consists of a 90-minute e-learning package that prepares staff for part 2, which involves meeting and learning directly from people with a learning disability and autistic people. Part 1 was launched last November and has now passed one million completions.
Part 2 of the training consists of interactive online sessions for tier 1 and face-to-face sessions for tier 2. These sessions are being rolled out across England. Both parts of the training must be undertaken in order to complete the programme.
“To reach one million completions of this vital training is a fantastic achievement – but it is important to remind ourselves that this is only the first step in an important large-scale intervention to address health inequalities for people with a learning disability and autistic people. The training is a vital element of an ongoing culture change to ensure our services are safe, accessible, and adjusted to people’s needs. We are therefore urging employers across health and care to ensure staff get the training appropriate to their role – to make an impact now and for future generations.”
“I am pleased that over a million people have a much better understanding of people who have a learning disability and autistic people. It is a significant milestone to have so many people now completing part one of The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training, meaning that our learning disability and autism communities will have much better experiences living in society and accessing health and care. I know that if Oliver was here, he would be incredibly proud.”
How Can I Access the Programme?
Part 1: E-learning
Part 2: Online interactive session (tier 1) and face-to-face session (tier 2)
The Lincolnshire offer for the second part of both tier 1 and tier 2 is currently under development by the Lincolnshire ICB and is likely to be available from January 2024.