Development Process of Canadian Tools and Acknowledgements

Introduction to Tools for the Primary Care of People with Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities

Intellectual disabilities refer to a range of conditions in which lifelong limitations in intellectual functioning and in conceptual, social, and practical skills (i.e., adaptive functioning) are noticeable before age 18 years. Developmental disabilities are conditions that limit at least three major life functions and are manifested before age 22.

The tools in the original book, Tools for the Primary Care of People with Developmental Disabilities, published in 2011, were developed to assist primary care providers (general practitioners, family physicians, nurses, nurse practitioners) in caring for adults with IDD in Canada by helping them to implement various recommendations in Primary care of adults with developmental disabilities: Canadian consensus guidelines (DD Guidelines).


We would like to acknowledge the sponsors of the DD Primary Care Initiative: Ontario Ministry of Community and Social Services, Ontario Ministry of Health and Long-Term Care, Surrey Place Centre, and Surrey Place Centre Charitable Foundation.  Their shared financial support of this initiative since 2005 has made the development and printing of these tools possible.

A special thank you to those listed below who have contributed so much to the development and review of these tools.  Thank you also to parents of adults with DD, caregivers and in particular to persons with DD who have contributed generously in various ways to this project.

On behalf of all those who have contributed to this project, we hope that these tools will help, in some way, to improve the health and well-being of adults with DD, so that they may more fully take part in all aspects of life.


William F. Sullivan, Maureen Kelly, Marika Korossy, and John Heng, Co-editors

1 Sullivan WF, Berg JM, Bradley E, Cheetham T, Denton R, Heng J, Hennen B, Joyce D, Kelly M, Korossy M, Lunsky Y, McMillan S. Primary care of adults with developmental disabilities: Canadian consensus guidelines. Can Fam Physician 2011;57:541-53.

Team Saw a Need for Tools

This initiative has brought together family physicians and other health care professionals who practice in a variety of clinical settings, with expertise in the care of adults with developmental disabilities (DD).  Their names, areas of expertise, and place of practice are listed below.

Dr. William F. Sullivan (Chair)
Family Medicine and Ethics
Toronto, ON

Dr. Joseph M. Berg
Medical Genetics and Psychiatry
Toronto, ON

Dr. Elspeth Bradley
Toronto, ON

Dr. Tom Cheetham
Family Medicine
Toronto, ON

Dr. Cynthia Forster-Gibson
Family Medicine and Genetics
Mississauga, ON

John Heng
London, ON

Dr. Brian Hennen
Family Medicine
Halifax, NS

Dr. David Joyce
Family Medicine
Vancouver, BC

Maureen Kelly
Toronto, ON

Marika Korossy
Library Science
Toronto, ON

Dr. Yona Lunsky
Toronto, ON

The 2019 version of the tools were developed with input from family physicians, primary care providers, and caregivers with experience in caring for people with intellectual and developmental disabilities. These tools support primary care providers implementing the Canadian consensus guidelines on the primary care of adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities (IDD).

Read more about the development of each tool and meet the team responsible in the links listed on each web page.

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