July 2006, Vol.6, No.7
Visit www.aamr.org/FYI/ to access current and past issues of this monthly newsletter. Subscribe at http://www.responsetrack.net/aamr/sign_up
SPECIAL ANNOUNCEMENT FOR AAMR MEMBERS
The members of the American Association on Mental Retardation voted to change the name of the association to the American Association on Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities by an overwhelming majority. This new name will be effective starting January 1, 2007. Read more about the results of the name change athttp://www.aamr.org/About_AAMR/name.shtml.
Dear AAMR Friends and Colleague:
LOUISIANA ADOPTS THE SUPPORTS INTENSITY SCALE AND COMMITS TO AN INDIVIDUALIZED, NEEDS-BASED ASSESSMENT OF SUPPORT SERVICES FOR PERSONS WITH INTELLECTUAL DISABILITIES
Despite two natural disasters, including hurricanes Katrina and Rita and the resulting tragic chaos, the state of Louisiana stuck to its commitment to the Supports Intensity Scale and has completed assessing approximately 3,000 persons with intellectual disabilities for support needs and services since adopting SIS in November 2005. The state anticipates using the Scale with an additional 6,500 persons in the upcoming year. Read more at http://www.siswebsite.org/page.ww?section=News&name=Press+Release+Detail&pressrelease.id=26.
Georgia and Utah are the two other states that have adopted SIS in the recent past.
The Supports Intensity Scale, developed by the American Association on Mental Retardation, is a planning tool that moves away from a functional, skills-based assessment of a person with an intellectual disability to an evaluation of a person’s daily support needs to live a desired life in a community. Learn more atwww.siswebsite.org. To stay in touch with SIS news, sign up for the SIS Vantage, a free quarterly newsletter, at http://www.responsetrack.net/aamr/sis/sign_up.
ORGAN TRANSPLANTATION IS SUCCESSFUL IN PERSONS WITH INTELLECTUAL DISABILITIES, SAYS NEW STUDY
The condition of mental retardation does not lessen the likelihood that a patient will benefit from a kidney transplant, suggests a new study by Dr. Steven Reiss, Director of the Nisonger Center for Mental Retardation in Ohio. A survey of published cases worldwide found that the one-year survival rate for people with mental retardation who received kidney transplants was 100 percent, and the three-year survivor rate was 90 percent. This effectively rules out any reason why persons with mental retardation are not good candidates for transplants, notes Dr. Reiss. Dr. Reiss was the recipient of the Distinguished Research Award from the American Association on Mental Retardation (AAMR) in 2003.
Read a press release issued on the study by the Ohio State University athttp://researchnews.osu.edu/archive/orgtrans.htm. To read an abstract of "Organ transplantation, organ donation and mental retardation" to be published in an upcoming issue of Pediatric Transplantation, visit http://www.blackwell-synergy.com/doi/abs/10.1111/j.1399-3046.2006.00545.x
In 2004, the National Work Group on Disability and Transplantation conducted a national survey on the issue of organ transplants among persons with disabilities as a first step to remedy the dearth of information on organ transplantation among persons with intellectual disabilities. Read more athttp://www.aamr.org/FYI/fyi_vol_4_no_4.shtml#read
SHARP RISE IN ANTIPSYCHOTIC MEDICATIONS AMONG CHILDREN AND ADOLESCENTS IN THE UNITED STATES; MENTAL RETARDATION IS AMONG TOP THREE REASONS FOR PRESCRIPTION OF MEDICATIONS
Antipsychotic prescriptions for people aged 20 and younger rose six-fold from 1993-2002 in the United States, with prescriptions increasing from 201,000 to 1.2 million during that time, reports a study conducted by scientists from leading organizations, including the National Institute of Mental Health, part of the National Institutes of Health. Persons with pervasive developmental disorders or mental retardation constitutes 17.3 percent of the patients with prescriptions for an antipsychotic medication. The study finds that from 2000-2002, more than 90 percent of the prescriptions analyzed were for newer medications that have not necessarily been approved for pediatric use.
To read a press release from the National Institute of Mental Health, visithttp://www.nimh.nih.gov/press/kidantipsychrx.cfm
To read an abstract of "National Trends in the Outpatient Treatment of Children and Adolescents With Antipsychotic Drugs" in the June 2006 issue of the Archives of General Psychiatry, visit http://archpsyc.ama-assn.org/cgi/content/abstract/63/6/679.
MORE ON THE ENVIRONMENT AND INTELLECTUAL DISABILITIES: INTERVIEW WITH MICHELE WAGNER, DIRECTOR OF THE AAMR ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH INITIATIVE Michele N. (Gagnon) Wagner, MPH, heads the Environmental Health Initiative at the American Association on Mental Retardation, and for the past 2 years, has been working on a variety of educational, policy, and research efforts on promoting good health and reducing toxic exposures for the developmental disability community. Read an interview with Michele athttp://www.aamr.org/FYI/interview_environmentalhealth.shtml
CLUE TO AUTISM IN CHILD MAY BE IN PLACENTA, FINDS NEW STUDY
A team of scientists led by Dr. Harvey Kliman of the Yale School of Medicine compared the placentas from babies who went on to develop autism with those from normal children, and found that a characteristic pattern was three times more common in the former. The abnormality examined was an unusual folding of the surface layers of the placenta that tends to trap a class of cells called trophoblasts as "inclusions" within the layers. This discovery may be a clue to the developmental problems that leads to autism. Read more at http://www.yale.edu/opa/newsr/06-06-26-01.all.html
Click here to read an abstract of "Placental Trophoblast Inclusions in Autism Spectrum Disorder" in Biological Psychiatry.
AAMR F.Y.I. is compiled by Anna Prabhala, Editor. Please submit comments, suggestions, tips, and news to email@example.com.
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