The health role of local area coordinators in Scotland: A mixed methods study

Michael Brown*, Thanos Karatzias, Lisa O'Leary

*Corresponding author for this work

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


The study set out to explore whether local area coordinators (LACs) and their managers view the health role of LACs as an essential component of their work and identify the health-related activities undertaken by LACs in Scotland. A mixed methods cross-sectional phenomenological study involving local authority service managers (n = 25) and LACs (n = 40) was adopted. Quantitative data from LACs were obtained using online and postal questionnaires. Qualitative data from local authority service managers and LACs were collected using one-to-one interviews and focus groups. Thematic analysis was undertaken of the qualitative data. The results indicate that there is a need to develop further the wider public health role of LACs to incorporate health-related activities focused on broader community-based outcomes such as empowerment and community integration. By adopting a public health role, LACs will be able to contribute to the reduction of health inequalities in people with learning disabilities.

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)387-402
Number of pages16
JournalJournal of Intellectual Disabilities
Issue number4
Early online date28 Oct 2013
Publication statusPublished - 01 Dec 2013
Externally publishedYes


  • Health inequalities
  • Health needs
  • Health policy
  • Intellectual disabilities
  • Public health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Health Professions (miscellaneous)
  • Psychiatry and Mental health


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