Caring for older people with an intellectual disability: a systematic review

Maturitas. 2012 Aug;72(4):286-95. doi: 10.1016/j.maturitas.2012.05.008. Epub 2012 Jun 9.


This review critically evaluates the available research literature on aging among people with an intellectual disability. 42 papers meeting the review inclusion criteria are presented under three themes: studies with a service user perspective (13), studies of carers of older people with ID (14) and studies of service provision for older people with ID (15). User view specific findings relate to concerns about accommodation; experiences of services; and perceptions of aging; with a common underlying finding from all user focused themes that of unmet need. Carer specific findings relate to fear of the future; experiences of older carers; and planning for the future. Services themes reflect the debate over specialist or generalist services as people age; accommodation; retirement from day services; and staff training. Overall this review reveals a lack of robust research evidence concerning the lives of older people with ID and a need for more research that directly engages with older people with ID and their carers.

Publication types

  • Review
  • Systematic Review

MeSH terms

  • Age Factors
  • Aged
  • Aging
  • Attitude to Health*
  • Caregivers*
  • Empathy
  • Fear
  • Health Services Needs and Demand*
  • Health Services*
  • Housing
  • Humans
  • Intellectual Disability*
  • Perception
  • Persons with Mental Disabilities*