What is it about?

There is growing interest regarding the relationship and sexuality experiences and needs of children, young people and adults with intellectual disabilities.

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Why is it important?

RSE programmes have been developed to address the distinct needs of people with ID and include issues such as capacity and consent, anatomy and biology, contraception and sexual behaviours. It also remains to be established who is involved in the design and delivery of RSE programmes for people with ID and the extent to which an evaluative process is integral to the approach.


The aim of this systematic review was to identify the design, content, delivery and evaluation approaches used in RSE programmes for people with intellectual disabilities across the lifespan. The two key professional groups that emerged as those most commonly involved in the delivery of RSE programmes are school teachers and registered nurses. Some were of the view that they did not possess the necessary knowledge and skills to confidently deliver RSE programmes to people with intellectual disabilities. Therefore, to address these needs it is necessary to provide access to education and practice development initiatives that build their knowledge, skills and confidence.

Dr Edward McCann
City, University of London

Read the Original

This page is a summary of: The Design, Content and Delivery of Relationship and Sexuality Education Programmes for People with Intellectual Disabilities: A Systematic Review of the International Evidence, International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health, October 2020, MDPI AG,
DOI: 10.3390/ijerph17207568.
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