Launch of DVD Featuring Older People with an Intellectual Disability as part of Study on Ageing

Posted on: 25 June 2012

Presenter Brendan O’Connor Launches ‘Scenes from Our Lives’

A new multi-media project on ageing in Ireland among people with an intellectual disability was launched on June 20 by presenter, Brendan O’Connor at a Night at the Oscars themed event.  Actors with an intellectual disability who featured in the DVD were presented with awards for their performances by the journalist who was acting as MC for the evening.

The DVD titled ‘Scenes from Our Lives’  presents the findings of the Intellectual Disability Supplement to the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA) with short filmed segments using actors with intellectual disability that depict specific findings of the study.

IDS-TILDA is a longitudinal study researching ageing in Ireland among people with an intellectual disability aged 40 and over, the first wave of which was published earlier this year.  It is the first of its kind in Europe and is also uniquely inclusive, from inception to dissemination

Janice Ryan and Helen Cooney from Prosper Fingal, presented with an award by Brendan O’Connor and Professor Mary McCarron

IDS-TILDA lead academic Professor Mary McCarron and Dean of Health Sciences with  Maggie Gahan and presenter,  Brendan O’Connor

One of the findings of the published study was that people with intellectual disability were, as they aged, largely absent from the digital world.  On foot of that, the IDS-TILDA team devised a multimedia project inclusive in nature in which people with Intellectual disability are active participants as well as utilising and benefiting from the research. This multimedia approach seeks to welcome people with intellectual disabilities to a range of media and project-specific iPad/Android apps and other touchscreen technology will be added to further increase accessibility.

Commenting on the significance of the research and multimedia initiative, Professor Mary McCarron,   lead academic of the IDS-TILDA, School of Nursing and Midwifery and Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at TCD says:

“From its inception, the inclusion of people with an ID in the research process has been integral. The creation of accessible materials has been key to supporting such participation. To realise this ethos of inclusion the IDS-TILDA team devised this multimedia project of ‘Getting the Message to the People that Matter; Innovation in Research Dissemination’©, of which the DVD forms its first component. This multimedia approach in which people with ID are both active participants and users of the research  enhances understanding and increases access.”

In the next phase of the project, the acted scenes will be uploaded to a user-friendly multimedia website with text only and visual and auditory enhanced elements to overcome literacy barriers, further advance understanding and encourage interaction among people with ID and their family/carers.

Notes to Editors

About the Intellectual Disability Supplement to Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA)

The Intellectual Disability Supplement to The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA) is being carried out by Trinity College Dublin and led by Professor Mary McCarron,  of the  School of Nursing and Midwifery and Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences at TCD.

The Intellectual Disability Supplement to Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA) is designed to better understand the experiences and challenges of adults with an intellectual disability (ID) as they age.  In its first wave of data collection, IDS-TILDA accumulated a sample of 753 persons aged 40+ with an ID.  The sample was drawn randomly from the National Intellectual Disability Database (NIDD) which responded to questionnaires addressing demographics, health, health utilisation, medication usage, ADL/IADLs, employment/day programming, social participation, social connectedness, life satisfaction, happiness, ageing perceptions, personal choices, sources of income and life-long learning.  The first wave cross-sectional findings established that the ageing of people with ID was similar in many respects to that of the general population but there were important differences in physical and mental health, health care access and utilization, incidence of dementia, and access to life-long learning, social engagement and friendship/family networks. The data is attracting national and international interest and it is the research team’s plan to make the data available electronically to other researchers.

Why this DVD? : You really don’t get the full impact of a finding that people with ID don’t always talk to their GP until you see a scene of a doctor’s visit play out, as you do here, where despite the kindest and best intentions of everyone involved the person with ID does not tell the doctor her concerns.