Learning Disability AHC

The LD health check pre-questionnaire has been developed locally by the Community LD nurse specialists to provide information to support the AHC.

We hope you find this a useful resource

LD healthcheck questionnaire V.2

Learning Disability Annual Health Checks – Advice and Support Pathway to Completing AHCs

Please can we emphasise the importance of completing Annual Health checks for people with learning disability and to request that you really prioritise this from now until 31st March 2021.

A number of studies and extensive research has concluded that people with learning disabilities (LD) have poorer physical and mental health than other people and die at a significantly younger age. The greatest difference between people with learning disabilities and the general population was in relation to medical causes of death which are treatable with access to timely and effective healthcare. A third of deaths of people with learning disabilities were from treatable medical causes, compared to 8% in the general population – a four-fold difference. This is not inevitable. These are health inequalities that can, to a significant extent, be avoided. One approach of proven value is annual health checks to identify developing health problems early, to check that people are getting the right healthcare, current treatments are appropriate and working and to familiarise people with learning disabilities with their GP and the surgery, establishing trust so they are better able to use them when the need arises.

GPs and practice nurses have the much needed generalist skills to help people with LD get timely access to increasing complex health systems. Please find attached the excel spreadsheet identifying performance against each practice code against the target of 67%.

Priority for NHS

NHS England have emphasised that AHCs for people with LD is a priority throughout the covid pandemic. “In order to reduce the risk of increased unnecessary deaths in people with a learning disability during the coronavirus outbreak it is essential that annual health checks continue to be carried out.”

NHSEI have produced a support pack ‘Midlands Region Support Pack for GP Practices Re-starting Annual Learning Disability Health Checks’ which can be found at Appendix 1.

Payment for Annual Health Checks

Important – Virtual or Remote Annual Health Checks

Healthcare Professionals should discuss with the patient (if considered to have mental capacity), their carer or their advocate the most suitable and safe way to conduct a health check. Where this can be delivered safely on a face to face basis this should continue. Where this care cannot be delivered safely face to face or where the patient has other medical conditions which require them to shield or socially isolate the review could be conducted remotely, with as much of the physical review completed as is practicable in these circumstances. Practices should use their clinical judgement and knowledge of the patient, together with the advice of family or other carers, in determining whether they would be able to participate in a remote review. Reasonable adjustments should be made to accommodate the needs of patients and carers as well as considering the capacity and capability of the GP practice whilst working in different ways. Where practices can demonstrate that they are taking an individual approach to health check delivery and are completing as much of the prescribed elements as practicable then they will be eligible for payment under the DES during 2020/21.

Annual Health checks for people with LD are part of three funding streams.

  1. Direct Enhanced Service (DES) – £140 per patient will be paid for each AHC as part of the DES.
  2. Covid Capacity Expansion Fund – 1 of the 7 expectations of the covid capacity fund is to achieve 67% of AHCs for people with Learning Disabilities. The payment is £2.43 per head of practice population.
  3. PCN Investment Impact Fund (IIF) – this funding is available for PCNs as a stepped payment (between 49% to 80% of AHCs completed per PCN) and one of the requirements is achievement of the LD AHCs as a priority of the NHS Long Term Plan.

Therefore, payment is available for AHCs completed up to 31st March under the DES, and these payments will still be paid where checks are initialised online and for partially completed AHCs where face to face checks are not possible. The spreadsheet identifies payments already achieved and payments that could be paid for further checks carried out up to the 67% target.

An example of best practice can be found at Appendix.2.

In addition, there is an excellent toolkit to support Annual Health checks for people with learning disabilities. You can access by clicking this link: https://www.rcgp.org.uk/clinical-and-research/resources/toolkits/health-check-toolkit.aspx

Should you have any queries or difficulties then please do not hesitate to contact the following people:

Dr Waheed Abbasi: Waheed.Abbasi@NorthStaffsCCG.nhs.uk

Dr Murray Campbell: murray.campbell@nhs.net

Equally, if you feel that your patient may require some community support then please feel free to contact the below emails/ phone numbers:

North Staffordshire Combined Healthcare Trust:

  • Stoke-on-Trent Telephone: 0300 123 1152
  • North Staffordshire Telephone: 0300 123 1153.
  • Harplands Hospital: 01782 441 600

Midlands Partnership Foundation Trust:

Children and Young People’s Learning Disabilities:

  • Telephone: 0300 790 7000 or email: childrensld.team@nhs.uk

Adult Learning Disabilities:

  • Lichfield (East Staffs.) cldteast@mpft.nhs.uk or telephone: 01785 221576
  • Stafford (West Staffs.) cldtwest@mpft.nhs.uk or telephone: 01543 442030

The Health Facilitation Teams from MPFT and NSCHT have produced a pathway for completion of Annual Health Checks, these can be found at Appendix 2 and Appendix 3 respectively.


You can contact the Health Facilitation Leads as below:

NSCHT: The named lead for your practice can be found in Appendix 5

Jackie Shapland Jacqueline.Shapland@combined.nhs.uk

Rosanna Zacune rosanna.zacune@combined.nhs.uk


Sarah Cherry – Burntwood, Lichfield and Tamworth – sarah.cherry@mpft.nhs.uk

Jo Turner – Cannock and Rugeley – joanne.turner@mpft.nhs.uk

Alison Rosenberg – Stafford and Seisdon – Alison.rosenberg@mpft.nhs.uk

Stephanie Brinklow – Burton and Uttoxeter – Stephanie.brinklow@mpft.nhs.uk

Helen Biddington – North Staffs, Leek and Moorlands – helen.biddington@mpft.nhs.uk

CCG Primary Care lead:-

Sarah Turner, Senior Primary Care Delivery Manager  sarah.turner@staffsstokeccgs.nhs.uk


Reasonable adjustments to support LD Annual Health Checks.

This resource has been developed with our clinical leads and community LD nurse specialists to support when making arrangements for an Annual Health check.

The clinician should consider if any reasonable adjustments are required in order to have a successful appointment.

The document provides some examples of Reasonable Adjustments that can be made for people with Learning Disabilities, an accessible summary and communication jargon buster. Reasonable Adjustments

This will be available on the COVID Response website together with other useful resources recently shared with practices.