IASSIDD is in official relations with the World Health Organization (WHO). We currently have an agreed work plan that covers six areas.

  • Supporting the development of the mental health Gap Action Programme (mhGAP), especially in the area of intellectual disability. mhGAP aims to scale up services for mental, neurological and substance use disorders in low and middle income countries.
  • Contributing to WHO work on estimation of Burden of Diseases in the area of intellectual disability.
  • Supporting the production, dissemination and use of the World Report on Disability and Rehabilitation.
  • Contributing to the revision of ICD-10 categories related to intellectual disability.
  • Providing support for national and global efforts to promote health and rehabilitation for persons with disabilities.
  • Providing relevant material to WHO in the area of intellectual disability and to disseminate WHO material to researchers in intellectual disability.

WHO – Guidelines on mental health promotive and preventive interventions for adolescents.

Adolescence is one of the most rapid and formative phases of human development. During this time adolescents develop knowledge and social-emotional skills and acquire attributes and abilities that are important for assuming adult roles and active contribution to society. Up to 50% of all mental health conditions start before the age of 14 years and up to one in five adolescents experience a mental disorder each year. Suicide is one of the three leading causes of death among older adolescents. In turn, poor adolescent mental health is associated with a range of high-risk behaviours, including self harm, tobacco, alcohol and substance use, risky sexual behaviours and exposure to violence, the effects of which persist throughout the life-course and have serious implications. READ REPORT

The first WHO/World Bank Group World Report on Disability was launched June 9, 2011 at the UN. Details and images are available at http://www.who.int/disabilities/world_report/2011/en/index.html

  • several members of IASSIDD contributed to the report
  • IASSIDD was represented at the launch by Phil Davidson
  • IASSIDD will be supporting WHO in developing actions plans following the launch

Publications arising from our previous work with WHO on aging and intellectual disability are available at http://www.who.int/mental_health/resources/ageing/en/index.html.
Also, of direct interest to members of IASSIDD are the current WHO disease control priorities relating to intellectual disability http://whqlibdoc.who.int/publications/2006/924156332X_eng.pdf.

Better Health, Better Lives – Research Priorities
This paper outlines the present situation and indicates the way forward for the priority areas identified in the European Declaration on Children and Young People with Intellectual Disabilities and their Families.
The Paper is available at this link.

To obtain more information on these WHO initiatives follow the above links.
To obtain more information on IASSIDD’s work in these areas please contact Eric Emerson.

World Report on Disability and Intellectual Disability
Presentation by Alana Officer at the 2013 IASSIDD World Congress in Tokyo, Japan

International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD) 

The International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD) is the first and only world-wide group dedicated to the scientific study of intellectual disability.

Founded in 1964 as the International Association for the Scientific Study of Mental Deficiency, IASSIDD is an international, interdisciplinary and scientific non-governmental organization which promotes worldwide research and exchange of information on intellectual disabilities.


Please contact the IASSIDD international office for questions about joining IASSIDD, renewing your membership or general questions.
© 2018 International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD)