Helping people with intellectual disabilities manage their health

People with intellectual disabilities face unique challenges in staying healthy. Get Wise can give them the knowledge and confidence they need to manage their own health.


Get Wise seeks to provide easy-to-use online training materials to help individuals with Intellectual Disabilities (ID) learn more about keeping healthy. Co-created with members of the target audience, the course aims to encourage people with ID to become informed consumers of health by helping them understand how to talk to their doctor and how to live a healthier lifestyle.

The initial module will be “Going to the Doctor”, a key lesson, given that one in three people with ID report challenges in talking to their healthcare professionals. The module will provide the learner with information on how to prepare for a visit with the doctor, what to expect and how to get the most out of the experience. Another module under development is “Wise up to your bone health”.

The initial audience will be provided through ID service providers cooperating closely with the programme, and then the platform will be opened up to a broader audience through a large network of service providers in Ireland and The Netherlands.

Responses to COVID-19

As COVID-19 impacted the initial plan for co-creating the course, focus groups will be moved from in-person meetings to online meeting platforms, a novel way of interviewing individuals with ID.

Also in response to COVID-19, the programme organisers started a campaign called “Get Connected, Stay Connected”, in which they asked people with ID, many of whom now have no access to their regular day services, to send artwork or clips of how they are staying healthy during this crisis. ID-assistance services have expressed interest in participation in this activity, as it has been recognised as a positive means to alleviate social isolation and distress during the pandemic.

Images from the programme:
Eilish Burke
| Activity Lead | Trinity College Dublin