An Intellectual Disability Supplement to TILDA (The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing)


Lead Researchers: Prof M McCarron (PI); J Swineburne, P McCallion

Project Lead

Mary McCarron





Last updated

26th August 2013
Lead Researchers: Prof M McCarron (PI); J Swineburne, P McCallion
  • Aim: The Intellectual Disability (ID) Supplement to the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (TILDA) will provide valid and reliable data describing the social, economic and health status of older Irish adults with ID and will identify factors that influence successful ageing.
  • Background: In Ireland and elsewhere there is for the first time a sizeable and growing population of older persons with intellectual disabilities (ID). There is much concern that mortality is higher than for the general population, health problems are greater, access to services and health promotion is poorer and quality of life is often compromised. Ireland has an established National Intellectual Disability Database (NIDD), which will support a longitudinal follow-up of ageing in persons with ID.
  • Sample: There will be two samples; (1) Stratified convenience pilot sample of 80 persons with ID aged 40 years and over. (2) Randomly selected sample of approximately 800 persons with ID aged 40 years and over drawn from the NIDD for longitudinal follow-up.
  • Measures: The measures in the ID Supplement will be comparable to those being used in the TILDA study and will include data on health, cognitive status, activities of daily living, income, living situations, social life and overall quality of life collected on a three yearly basis for at least 10 years.
  • Analysis: For the pilot sample, analysis will focus upon the acceptability and feasibility of the instruments. For the longitudinal study, a descriptive statistical picture of the life experiences of adults with ID will be developed as well as comparisons with the general population findings of TILDA.
  • Implications: The study will provide the first comprehensive picture of ageing in persons with ID in Ireland and Europe and will offer data to support the development of policies, services and resources to meet the needs of people with ID as they age.