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The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training in Learning Disability and Autism.

What is The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training in Learning Disabilities and Autism?

This training will ensure staff working in health and social care receive learning disability and autism training, at the right level for their role. They will have a better understanding of people’s needs, resulting in better services and improved health and wellbeing outcomes.

Where did it come from?

In November 2019, the Government published 'Right to be heard' its response to the consultation on proposals for introducing mandatory learning disability and autism training for health and social care staff.

The response included a commitment to develop a standardised training package. The training will draw on existing best practice, the expertise of people with autistic people, people with a learning disability and family carers as well as subject matter experts.

HEE and Skills for Care are co-ordinating the development of training in both health and social care. The training is being co-produced and delivered by autistic people, people with a learning disability and family carers. If you want to find out more, please email information.team@skillsforcare.org.uk

Why is it called The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training? 

The training is named after Oliver McGowan, whose death shone a light on the need for health and social care staff to have better training.

You can see more about Oliver’s Campaign here and take a look at the video of Oliver's story here.

Training trials

During 2021, training developed by three training partners was trialled across the health and care sectors. NTDi, the independent evaluator, were appointed as the independent evaluator for the trials. Throughout the trial period we held regular stakeholder forums to keep people up-to-date. The fifth and final trial stakeholder forum took place on 25th May 2022, with over 650 people in attendance. 

We celebrated the success of the Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training trial and looked ahead to the future, hearing from speakers including: the Minister of State for Care and Mental Health, Gillian Keegan, Chief Nursing Officer for England, Ruth May, Oliver's parents, Paula McGowan OBE and Tom McGowan, experts by experience and Dame Caroline Dinenage DBE MP about what Oliver's training means to them. 

NDTi, reported their findings. This slide pack is an overview of their presentation. You can watch the full recording of the event here.

Evaluation reports:

Included in the Health and Care Act 2022

The Government have now introduced a requirement for CQC registered service providers to ensure their employees receive learning disability and autism training appropriate to their role. This is to ensure health and social care workforce have the right skills and knowledge to provide safe, compassionate and informed care to autistic people and people with a learning disability. This requirement is set out in the Health and Care Act 2022.

The Secretary of State is required to publish a Code of Practice, which will make provisions about the nature of the training including the content, delivery and the ongoing evaluation of the training. The government must carry out a public consultation on the Code of Practice. Timings of the consultation are currently being considered. 

What happens next?

The Department of Health and Social Care are exploring with statutory bodies (NHS England and Health Education England), as well as with Skills for Care, which elements of the Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training programme can start to be delivered while the Code of Practice is being produced.  

The Oliver McGowan Mandatory Training package is not yet available.  

Updates will be posted on this page, please check back regularly for details. 

Frequently asked questions 

Coming soon - We are developing a set of FAQs that will be added to this page shortly. 


Related videos (a selection films shown at our previous stakeholder events):