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Who we are > News > Free health screenings address poor health of people with intellectual disabilities

Free health screenings address poor health of people with intellectual disabilities

22/11/2017

More than 1200 athletes with intellectual disabilities from around the country will receive free ear, eye, feet and teeth checks at the Special Olympics New Zealand National Summer Games 2017.

Over seventy volunteer clinicians and students from health professions will screen the athletes, looking to identify previously undetected health issues that are common among people with intellectual disabilities. For the first time in New Zealand the eye screenings will include a specialist check for Keratoconus - an eye condition causing vision problems that is more common in people with Downs Syndrome than in the general population.

Dr Jeanine Doherty, Audiologist and Special Olympics New Zealand Board Trustee, says that “people with intellectual disabilities typically have poorer health status than the general public – in part because they may not be able to voice their symptoms and concerns to others, or because the health system does not delve hard enough to find unmet needs.”

Read the full press release

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