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Message from the Director

Prof. Mary McCarron Director of Trinity Centre for Ageing and Intellectual Disability

The increased life expectancy of people with an intellectual disability is an incredible success story, is to be celebrated, and we at this Centre are focused on ensuring they experience an active and healthy older age. Similar to the general population, as people with an intellectual disability age their support and care needs change, often with increased dependency, which places new demands on services and on families.

In the past, many people with an intellectual disability lived in institutional/congregated type settings, and we are advancing movement to and maintenance of community based alternatives as people age. Many now live independently or semi independently, with some continuing to live with their parents, but, as life expectancy increases, parents are now likely to pre-decease their offspring. We are concerned about supports for families continuing to care as the person with an intellectual disability grows older.

The concerns we address are critical to Ireland but equally of concern in other countries.

The Trinity Centre for Ageing and Intellectual Disability is therefore an international and multi-disciplinary research centre examining key issues in ageing and the life course, informing policy and debate at the national and local level.

Establishment of the Centre represents 20 years of important research contributions and is underpinned by cutting edge research emanating from the Intellectual Disability Supplement to The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA).

In articulating our Mission and Vision for the Centre we are mindful of challenges and opportunities, and we provide high quality and innovative research and education addressing the changing landscape of health care delivery and of daily life for people with intellectual disability and their families.