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Changing How Healthcare Is Taught

ABC3: Action to Build Clinical Confidence and Culture

People with IDD and and healthcare experts working together to enact strategies across the country that better prepare doctors and clinicians to provide care for people with IDD.

Changing How Clinicians are Trained to Treat People with IDD

The goal of the Action to Build Clinical Confidence and Culture (ABC3) Coalition is to change healthcare education, licensing requirements, and accreditation standards for clinicians so that doctors and clinicians are better prepared to serve people with IDD.

The ABC3 coalition includes:

--people with IDD
--care partners and caregivers
--doctors/clinicians

and leaders from:

--Professional medical societies
--Disability organizations
--Healthcare education groups and
--Accrediting bodies for healthcare.

Together, they:

--create campaigns and programs
--develop materials and
--gather resources.

The goal is to significantly change the healthcare culture and improve clinicians' knowledge and skills in caring for people with IDD on a large scale.

Why This Matters

Most people with IDD rely on general healthcare providers, not specialized centers. Many have chronic conditions requiring more frequent care.

However, medical training lacks requirements to teach about IDD, despite 1 in 20 Americans having an intellectual or developmental disability. Healthcare workers across roles and career stages lack proper preparation for caring for patients with IDD.

Since doctors receive very little training on caring for people with disabilities, it's not surprising that nearly 2 out of 3 doctors say they feel unprepared to provide good care to people with disabilities.

Doctors and clinicians are essential for everyone's healthcare. Lack of training and confidence in caring for people with IDD leads to extra barriers, lower-quality care, and less preventative services for this population.

This results in unnecessary health issues and preventable deaths for people with IDD compared to the general population.

ABC3 Highlights

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The National Roadmap for Disability-Inclusive Healthcare

Everyone deserves high-quality healthcare. That’s why we developed the National Roadmap for Disability-Inclusive Healthcare, a plan for clinicians to learn how to provide the best healthcare possible to people with IDD.

Steering Group Members

The ABC3 Steering Group includes people with IDD, their care partners, doctors, and other healthcare leaders. This diverse group works together based on listening to the real-life experiences of people with IDD and healthcare professionals. They use these perspectives to create practical solutions to improve healthcare.

Click on each to expand

  • Lauren Erickson, Director of Policy and Programs, IEC
  • Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education
  • American Academy of Developmental Medicine and Dentistry
  • American Academy of Pediatrics
  • American Academy of Physician Associates
  • American Association of Colleges of Nursing
  • American Association of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities
  • American College of Physicians
  • American Dental Education Association
  • Association of American Medical Colleges
  • Autistic Doctors International
  • BJ Stasio, Self-Advocate
  • Developmental Disabilities Nurses Association
  • ECHO Autism
  • IntellectAbility
  • Kayte Barton, Self-Advocate
  • Sherri Eldin, Self-Advocate and clinician

IEC is grateful for the following funders, whose support makes ABC3 possible:

The Ability Central logo in green
The Delta Dental Foundation logo in green and gray.
The Delta Dental Foundation logo on a green background with the word "Foundation" written in purple

Related Work

Making Healthcare Better and Safer for People with IDD

IEC works with people who have personal experience living with IDD and healthcare professionals. Together, they create new programs focused on patients' needs to change how healthcare is taught, provided, and paid for.

We’re hiring a Communications Manager! Learn more and apply by 7/24.