Reform of the health services in Norway for the mentally retarded led to a complete closure of all institutions for mentally retarded persons by the end of 1996. All 109 of the mentally retarded persons in the county of Sør-Trøndelag who were previously institutionalized were observed throughout this process, in 1987 and 1995. Both physical handicaps and psychiatric/behavioural problems had worsened. The carers' knowledge of their clients' physical health was inadequate in more than half (55%) of the cases. Medical treatment needed improving in 36% of the cases, while it was clearly deficient in 9%. There had been a reduction in the use of general medical services, as well as in the specialised services of psychologists, psychiatrists and neurologists. The organisation of services for this group of clients is in need of improvement.
Comment In: Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 1998 Mar 20;118(8):1258-99567707
Comment In: Tidsskr Nor Laegeforen. 1998 Feb 28;118(6):946-79543814