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Winterbourne Medicines Programme

The Child and Adolescent Mental Health and Learning Disabilities Team at St Georges are holding a series of meetings with parents of children with mental health and/or learning disabilities with challenging behaviour to gain their thoughts on, and experience with medication.

Following the exposure of the mistreatment of people with Learning Disabilities at the Winterbourne View Private Hospital in 2011, the Department of Health set up a review  'Transforming care: A national response to Winterbourne View Hospital'. This exposed deep concerns that people with learning disabilities and challenging behaviours were being prescribed medication inappropriately.

By working in partnership with individuals, teams and organisations, NHS Improving Quality wants to improve the service provided to people with learning disabilities whose behaviour can challenge and to their families and carers. This programme aims to ensure that in future medication for these vulnerable groups is safe, appropriate and optimised.

 The Programme has been set up to look at the needs of people of all ages including children, young people and adults taking a variety of medications including anti-depressants, anti-psychotics and mood stabilizers. It is also looking at different settings, including:

  • Hospitals
  • At home
  • Supported Housing
  • Treatment centres
  • Secure settings
  • Private care homesPrisons
  • Police custody and
  • Schools

Some of the issues to be discussed include:

  •  Medication is sometimes used to suppress behaviour that challenges
  • The implications of medications used 'off-label' or 'off licence' for people with learning disabilities and behaviour that challenges
  • People being prescribed medication without regular reviews
  • Issues with prescribing, administration and review of medication
  • Use of medication because support or therapies for people with learning disabilities are not readily available

If you are interested in attending these sessions and contributing towards the services the NHS provides, please contact Denise Gentry.

Who to contact

Contact Name
Denise Gentry
Parent Organisation
South West London and St George's Mental Health NHS Trust

Where to go

Access Child and Youth Mental Health Service
Joan Bicknell Centre
Springfield University Hospital
Burntwood Lane
SW17 7DJ
Get directions

Time / Date Details

When is it on
Sessions are occasional - please contact for more information


Referral required
Referral Details

These meetings are for anyone with demonstrable experience of the issue under discussion

Local Offer


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To take part in this activity you:

  • Can refer yourself

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