Improving transition to adulthood for adolescents with intellectual and developmental disabilities: Proactive developmental and systems perspective.
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OBJECTIVE: To demonstrate how family physicians can contribute to a piece of the journey of improving quality-of-life outcomes for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD) when they undergo the transition from adolescence to adulthood. SOURCES OF INFORMATION: The "Primary care of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. 2018 Canadian consensus guidelines" literature review and interdisciplinary input. MAIN MESSAGE: Family physicians should be proactive in anticipating and supporting the transition of people with IDD from adolescence to adulthood. Interventions should be guided by a developmental perspective regarding the person with IDD and a life-cycle approach to supporting families. Family physicians also have a role in helping people with IDD and their families to navigate successfully through changing community-based support systems in their province, especially health care and social services systems. Therefore, family physicians should be aware of current services available in their regions. CONCLUSION: Community and team-based family physicians can optimize the quality of life of people with IDD and their families by adopting a proactive developmental and systems approach to preparing youth with IDD for adulthood. In doing so, they exemplify the 4 principles of family medicine.
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