Disrupting ‘Tolerant Segregation’ of People who Live with IDD

Teen with Down Syndrome on an overlook by the ocean

Disrupting ‘Tolerant Segregation’ of People who Live with IDD

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Disruption Interruption podcast host and veteran communications disruptor, Karla Jo Helms, interviews Dr. Craig Escudé, President of IntellectAbility—exposing the unspoken stigma, issues and risks people with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).


Up to 4% of the United States population, or 7 to 8 million Americans, live with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IDD).(1) Of this population, according to a study conducted by researchers at UNSW, people with an intellectual and development disability (IDD) are twice as likely to die from a preventable death.(2) Much of this risk stems from the lack of training and education for doctors and other health professionals to deliver proper care for these individuals. Enter Disruptor Dr. Craig Escudé, President of IntellectAbility—who explains to Karla Jo Helms, host of the Disruption Interruption podcast that people with IDD are the last place where segregation is still tolerated—and to provide proper care, a new modernization of training for those who care for people with IDD needed to be developed.

After starting in the field in the late 1990s soon after his residency, Dr. Escudé still didn’t have much knowledge about IDD, even though he had gone to medical school. After 20 years of continuing to learn, Escudé hit a turning point around 2011 and said, THAT’S IT—I’M DONE WITH THE STATUS QUO—the state government had begun focusing on community support for people with IDD rather than institutional support, living in homes and apartments where services could support them there. That was when Dr. Escudé had his epiphany: People are going to die because he and his colleagues had not been taught what was needed to provide good care for individuals with IDD.

Dr. Escudé then made it his mission to find a way to provide the much-needed education so clinicians wouldn’t have to learn by trial and error. He realized he needed a way to identify who was at more risk for developing health problems. His company’s solution is the Health Risk Screening Tool (HRST), a web-based tool to helps supporters identify health risks and provide actionable steps to mitigate those risks.

Dr. Escudé reveals how the HRST:

  • Provides a simple 22-item scale designed to find out who is at the greatest risk of illness and health destabilization.
  • Looks for health risks associated with a wide variety of disabilities, including developmental disabilities, physical disabilities, disabilities associated with aging and other conditions.
  • Proves the validity of the tool with decreasing risk, increasing health & wellness, and decreased ER visits.

Disruption Interruption is the podcast where you’ll hear from today’s biggest Industry Disruptors. Learn what motivated them to bring about change and how they overcome opposition to adoption.

Disruption Interruption can be listened to via the Podbean app, and is available on Apple’s App Store and Google Play.

About Disruption Interruption:
Disruption is happening on an unprecedented scale, impacting all manner of industries— MedTech, Finance, IT, eCommerce, shipping and logistics, and more—and COVID has moved their timelines up a full decade or more. But WHO are these disruptors and when did they say, “THAT’S IT! I’VE HAD IT!”? Time to Disrupt and Interrupt with host Karla Jo “KJ” Helms, veteran communications disruptor. KJ interviews bad asses who are disrupting their industries and altering economic networks that have become antiquated with an establishment resistant to progress. She delves into uncovering secrets from industry rebels and quiet revolutionaries that uncover common traits—and not-so-common—that are changing our economic markets… and lives. Visit the world’s key pioneers that persist to success, despite arrows in their backs at http://www.disruptioninterruption.com.

About Karla Jo Helms:
Karla Jo Helms is the Chief Evangelist and Anti-PR(TM) Strategist for JOTO PR Disruptors(TM).
Karla Jo learned firsthand how unforgiving business can be when millions of dollars are on the line—and how the control of public opinion often determines whether one company is happily chosen, or another is brutally rejected. Being an alumni of crisis management, Karla Jo has worked with litigation attorneys, private investigators and the media to help restore companies of goodwill back into the good graces of public opinion—Karla Jo operates on the ethic of getting it right the first time, not relying on second chances and doing what it takes to excel. Helms speaks globally on public relations, how the PR industry itself has lost its way and how, in the right hands, corporations can harness the power of Anti-PR to drive markets and impact market perception.

About IntellectAbility:
IntellectAbility provides tools and training to agencies, governmental entities and supporters of people with intellectual and developmental disabilities to foster early recognition and mitigation of health risks thereby improving health and wellness. One such tool is the Health Risk Screening Tool (HRST), of which they are the sole developer, producer, and distributor. The web based HRST is the most widely used and validated health risk screening instrument for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. IntellectAbility also provides numerous health-related and person-centered service trainings for supporters of people with IDD. With unrelenting focus, IntellectAbility works to fulfill its mission of improving health and quality of life for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities and other vulnerabilities. For more information, visit ReplacingRisk.com.

1. empower-wny.org/wp-content/uploads/2016/08/Fact-Sheet-final3.pdf.
2. Wheelahan, Dan. “People with intellectual disability are twice as likely to die a preventable death,” UNSW Sydney Newsroom, February 8, 2017, newsroom.unsw.edu.au/news/health/people-intellectual-disability-are-twice-likely-die-preventable-death


Source: https://www.prweb.com/releases/disrupting_tolerant_segregation_of_people_who_live_with_idd/prweb18188164.htm

Capture Date: September 13, 2021