S.T.O.M.P (Stop The Over Medication of People with a learning disability, autism or both) is an initiative born of trying to stop the issue of over medication of people with learning disabilities and autism that has historically had a profoundly negative effect on many people. Over medication can lead to permanent brain damage, reduced capacity and many side effects including weight gain, depression, organ failure and premature death. It can prevent people from being themselves. In 2019, with medical advancements and countless studies supporting the superiority of other methods over debilitating drugs, over medication has no place.
Walsingham Support are proud to be a leading voice within S.T.O.M.P, it is a constant goal of ours to continuously reduce the amount of medication the people we support take. Currently, we have put the initiative into action in the following ways:
- Re-assessing long standing prescriptions, making sure they are necessary
- Making sure all new prescriptions are completely accurate, with stricter checks in place
- Structured, meticulously planned days that help give people we support structure
- Involving people we support in discussions about their medication
- Regular medication reviews and advanced staff training including on record keeping
At the event, we were the only people to co-deliver our presentation with a person we support. That person was Matt Snell, he presented alongside Mick Burgess, our Director of Operations (England & Wales). Matt and Mick role-played scenarios that are affected by over-medication, allowing participants a chance to see clearly with their own eyes just exactly why the initiative is so important. Matt then attended our recent Board meeting, reporting back about the S.T.O.M.P conference.
Our commitment to S.T.O.M.P is part of our constant journey to increase the quality of life and happiness of every person we support. Along the way, we have greatly impacted the lives of people we support that have had their lives changed as a result of the S.T.O.M.P initiatives. One such person is Melanie who since changing her medication has become more responsive and mobile.
Since early 2018, we have been working directly towards the S.T.O.M.P objectives, with a lot of work done and more positive change to come. We will continue to be a leading force in stopping the over medication of people with learning disabilities and autism for good.