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  • Millions committed for intellectual disability support

    Author: AAP

Australians living with intellectual disabilities will benefit from improved support, health services and groundbreaking research as part of the government's plan to bolster the nation's health systems.

There are more than 450,000 Australians living with an intellectual disability who are twice as likely to die from something avoidable.

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They are also more likely to suffer physical and mental health conditions while receiving less preventative health care.

Drawing on experiences with her sister who has an intellectual disability, Assistant Health Minister Ged Kearney said she has seen the challenges these Australians face.

"They deserve access to excellent, tailored and empathetic healthcare that fits their needs," she said on Friday.

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The federal government has committed $22 million over four years to establish a National Centre for Excellence in Intellectual Disability Health, as one of its 2022 election promises.

Run by a consortium of universities and intellectual disability organisations and led by the University of New South Wales, the centre will improve health services for people with intellectual disabilities and their families and identify gaps in research.

Lived experience will be an integral part of the centre, as its staff will include people who have an intellectual disability, as well as family members and carers.

The centre is part of the government's national roadmap for improving the health of people with intellectual disability.

Previously, the government provided $6.7 million to improve access to annual health assessments for people with intellectual disability and identify their unmet needs.

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