Advocacy for Service Users and Carers in Community Learning Disability Team Meetings When Service Users and Carers Are Absent
Many MDT team meetings occur where service users and their carers are absent. Service user views therefore need careful representation. Advocacy for service users is often undertaken by someone designated as an advocate. In an MDT meeting, there is no designated single advocate. Each clinician has a professional duty to advocate for service users. We examined how clinicians did this in MDT meetings. Elongated advocacy sequences occurred when there was a barrier to service access. Barriers originated from: the MDT, external services, or the service users family or social network. Advocacy was achieved through storytelling. This was punctuated with persuasive conversational devices: use of personal emotional responses, direct and indirect reported speech, re-enactments and contrast structures. Implications for advocating for service users are discussed.
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