Skip to main content

Trinity College Dublin, The University of Dublin

Menu Search

Trinity College Dublin By using this website you consent to the use of cookies in accordance with the Trinity cookie policy. For more information on cookies see our cookie policy.

Profile Photo

Professor Mary Mc Carron

Professor of Ageing & Intellectual Disab (School of Nursing & Midwifery)

Professor Mary McCarron, PhD RNID RGN BNS FTCD is Professor of Ageing and Intellectual Disability, Director of the Trinity Centre for Ageing and Intellectual Disability (TCAID) and Executive Director of the National Intellectual Disability Memory Service. She has held many senior leadership roles in Trinity College including Dean of the Faculty of Health Sciences and Head of the School of Nursing and Midwifery. Professor McCarron is the founder and Principal Investigator for IDS-TILDA, the longitudinal comparative study on ageing in persons with intellectual disability including persons with Down syndrome, a global first. IDS-TILDA increases understanding about how lives and chronic conditions change over time for this population, drives changes on healthcare practice and national health policy. Professor McCarron has also led a longitudinal cohort study of dementia in people with Down syndrome spanning over 25 years, which has led to the development of Ireland's first dedicated National Memory Service for people with an intellectual disability, where she serves as Executive Director. A champion of patient and public involvement in research (PPI) McCarron is Principal Investigator of PPI Ignite Programme at Trinity College Dublin, part of the national network among universities in Ireland funded by the HRB. She received the inaugural HRB Impact Award. She is co-applicant on the HRB's Clinical Research Network Awards for Dementia Trials Ireland (DTI), a world-class clinical trials' infrastructure to support and grow dementia intervention studies. In addition, she is the Irish Lead on the H21 Consortium working on Clinical and trial outcome measures for dementia in individuals with Down Syndrome, Professor McCarron has been a key advisor on ageing and policy issues to various governmental and other groups at a national and international level and an active member of the International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD).
  Aged care nursing   Ageing & Intellectual Disability - Changing Service Needs   Ageing & Intellectual Disability Issues   Ageing, Health and Intellectual Disability   Dementia in people with Down's syndrome   Mental health nursing   Palliative Care and Dementia   Palliative care nursing   People with Down Syndrome & Alzheimer's Disease
 Loneliness as experienced by people with an intellectual disability (LEID); Theoretical framework development to support future intervention studies.
 EQUIP: Examining Quality, Use and Impact of Psychotropic (Use) in older adults with intellectual disabilities
 Building Circles of Support for people with intellectual disabilities
 The Intellectual Disability Supplement to The Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA) Wave 5
 Development of OPTIMA-ID: Optimising Pharmaco-Therapy and Improving Medication for Ageing with Intellectual Disability.

Page 1 of 16
Details Date
Honorary Professor, Queen's University Belfast March 2023 - February 2026
Stewarts Care (Appointed to board February 2021) February 2021 - Present
Peamount Hospital (Appointed to board December 2018) December 2018 - Present
Member of the National Steering Committee for the National Dementia Office, HSE 2017 - Present
Advising the National Federation of Voluntary Bodies Working Group on Health Outcomes for Older Adults with Intellectual Disabilities 2017 - Present
Appointed by the Minister for Health to the Steering Committee of the National Trauma Strategy 2015
Dental Hospital (The Minister for Health appointed the Board in June 2015) Dental Board Meeting Performance and Succession Committee Meeting (Chair) June 2015 - Present
Board member of DOCTRID 2015 - Present
Language Skill Reading Skill Writing Skill Speaking
English Fluent Fluent Fluent
Details Date From Date To
Member, National Avista Dementia Strategy Group 2023 Present
Member, Digital Life Story Steering Committee (Avista) 2023 Present
Member, Menu of Life Enhancing Activities Steering Committee (Avista) 2023 Present
Member, The UK-Irish Consortium for ageing well with a lifelong disability: Priorities, perspectives and opportunities 2021 Present
Member, T21RS COVID-19 Impact group 2021 Present
Member, Independent Scientific and Ethics Advisory Board - Gene overdosage and comorbidities during the early lifetime in Down Syndrome (EU Research Project) 2020 Present
Member, Irish Gerontology 2020 Present
Member, Trisomy 21 Research Society 2019 Present
Member, National Steering Committee on Open Science, Health Research Board 2018 Present
Member and founder, National Federation Working Group on Health Outcomes for Older People with Intellectual Disability 2018 Present
Member, Steering Committee, National Dementia Office 2016 Present
Member, Trinity EngAGE, Trinity College Dublin 2010 Present
Member, HSE National Steering Group on Dementia, National Federation of Voluntary Bodies 2008 Present
Member, TILDA Steering Committee, Trinity College Dublin 2006 Present
Member, European Association of Palliative Care Taskforce on Palliative Care/End of life Care for People with Intellectual Disabilities 2005 Present
Member, International Down Syndrome Special Interest Group 2004 Present
Member, Special Interest Group (SIRG) on Aging and of the Nursing Special Interest Group 2000 Present
Advisor, Ageing related issues in persons with Intellectual Disability, Inclusion Ireland 2000 Present
Member, International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual Disability (IASSID) 2000 Present
Member, National Steering Committee, National Dementia Office, Health Service Executive (HSE) 2017 2018
Member, National Working Group on Extending Palliative Care to Persons with Advanced Dementia 2008
Member, Research Committee, National Federation of Voluntary Bodies 2008
External Member, Residential Care Standards for Older People by the Health Information Quality Authority (HIQA), St. Patrick's Hospital Cashel 2008
Member, Professional Advisory Group, Alzheimer's Europe Conference 2005 2004 2005
Member, Strategic Planning Group on Older People with Disabilities 2000 2004
Chair, 2003 Roundtable Session on International Service Delivery for Persons with Intellectual Disability and Dementia, Volos, Greece 2003 2003
Guest Reviewer - Irish Journal of Psychological Medicine, Journal of Intellectual Disability Research & American Journal of Mental Retardation
From Adulthood to Older Age - Ageing and Intellectual Disability. in, editor(s)Sheerin, F. & Doyle, C. , Intellectual Disabilities: Health and Social Care Across the Lifespan., Switzerland., Springer Cham., 2023, pp147 - 158, [McCallion, P. & McCarron, M.], Book Chapter, PUBLISHED  DOI
McCarron, M., PPI and Intellectual Disability. A Case Study from the IDS-TILDA Study, R2D2-MH, the Horizon Europe: Public and Patient Involvement: What it is and how to do it, Online, 7th February, 2023, R2D2-MH, Invited Talk, PRESENTED
McCausland, D., McCallion, P., Carroll, R. & McCarron, M., Barriers to Community Participation for Adults Aging With an Intellectual Disability in Ireland: A Longitudinal Study, Inclusion, 11, (3), 2023, 204, p217 , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
McMahon M, Wormald A, Eustace-Cook J, McCarron M, McCallion P and Smith V, Prevalence and incidence of cancer amongst adults with intellectual disability " a systematic review and meta-analysis protocol, HRB Open, 2023, Journal Article, IN_PRESS  DOI
Brennan, D., D'eath, M., McCallion, P. & McCarron, M., Health and well-being of sibling carers of adults with an intellectual disability in Ireland: Four waves of data., British Journal of Learning Disabilities., 2023, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Allen, A-P., McGlinchey, E., Fallon, M., McCallion, P. & McCarron, M., Cognitive reserve and dementia risk management in people with an intellectual disability., International Journal of Geriatric Psychiatry, 2023, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
O'Brien, F., McCallion, P., Ryan, C., Paul, A., Burke, É., Echiverri, S., & McCarron, M., Does Arterial Stiffness Predict Cardiovascular Disease in Older Adults With an Intellectual Disability?., Journal of Cardiovascular Nursing, 2023, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  DOI
Timmins, F., McCausland, D., Brennan, D., Sheerin, F., Luus, R., McCallion, P., & McCarron, M. , A national cohort study of spiritual and religious practices of older people with intellectual disability, A national cohort study of spiritual and religious practices of older people with intellectual disability, 0, 2023, p , Journal Article, PUBLISHED  URL
Kelly, K., Haigh, M., McCarron, M., McCallion, P., Burke, E-A. & Wormald, A-D., Moral distress in carers for people with an intellectual disabilitywho died during the COVID-19 pandemic, a template analysisextending the Barlem and Ramos model of moral distress., Journal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities, 2023, p1 - 9, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI
Wormald A, McGlinchey E, D'Eath M, Leroi I, Lawlor B, McCallion P, McCarron M, O'Sullivan R. & Chen Y., Impact of COVID-19 Pandemic on Caregivers of People with an Intellectual Disability, in Comparison to Carers of Those with Other Disabilities and with Mental Health Issues: A Multicountry Study., International Journal of Environmental Research and Public Health. , 20, (4), 2023, Journal Article, PUBLISHED  TARA - Full Text  DOI

Page 1 of 59
McCarron, M., Data Driving policy, Practice and healthcare change: The Intellectual Disability Supplement to the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing, FHM&S Postgraduate Research Symposium, Online, 1st June, 2023, University of Chester, UK, Invited Talk, PRESENTED
McCarron, M., Data from the Intellectual Disability Supplement to the Irish Longitudinal Study on Ageing (IDS-TILDA), National Statistics Board Meeting: Statistics, data and information on disability and related areas , Department of the Taoiseach, Dublin, 29th March, 2023, Central Statistics Office , Invited Talk, PRESENTED
McCarron, M., IDS TILDA 10 years on, Shaping the Future of Intellectual Disability Nursing in Ireland Conference 2023 and Beyond"A Partnership Approach., Killashee House Hotel Naas, Co. Kildare., Wednesday 24th May., 2023, HSE Office of Nursing and Midwifery Services Director., Invited Talk, PRESENTED
McCarron, M., Developing Post-Diagnostic Dementia Support Guidelines for People with an Intellectual Disability., Dementia Research-Bridging the gap between research, policy and practice., Radisson Blu Royal Hotel, Golden Lane, Dublin., 22/02/2023, 2023, The Alzheimer Society of Ireland., Invited Talk, PRESENTED
McGlinchey, E., Bray, F., Fortea, J., Yap, M-L., Kennelly, S. & McCarron, M., Complex Joy?: A Celebration of Brain Health in People with Down Syndrome, Creative Brain Week 2023, Science Gallery, Trinity College Dublin, 9th March , 2023, Oral Presentation, PRESENTED
Fallon, M., McGlinchey, E. & McCarron, M., Modifiable lifestyle factors associated with age of dementia diagnosis., Horizon 21 Consortium F2F Meeting., Munich, Germany., 15th - 16th June, 2023, Oral Presentation, PRESENTED
Sheerin, F., Fleming, S., McCarron, M., McCallion, P., May, P., Lalor, G. & D'eath, M. Fleming, S., The Care of Older Adults with Intellectual Disabilities and Complex Age-Related Conditions, National Disability Authority, January, 2023, Report, PUBLISHED
McCarron, M., Leadership in Health Research and Health Care - My Journey , Local Network Orientation for Atlantic Fellows, GBHI, Lloyd Institute, 7th September, 2022, GBHI, Invited Talk, PRESENTED
McCarron, M., Addressing Inequity in Healthcare for People with Intellectual Disabilities: Improving the Patient Journey., Academic Primary Care Centre (APCC) Lecture , Russell Centre, Cookstown Way, Tallaght, Dublin 24, Thursday, 26th May, 2022, Faculty of Health Sciences, Invited Talk, PRESENTED
Byrne, K., MacGiolla Phadraig, C., Daly, B., McCarron, M. & McCallion, P., The Oral Health Status of Older People with Intellectual Disabilities in Ireland. Initial Findings., Irish Society for Disability and Oral Health (ISDH) , The Lyrath Estate Hotel, Kilkenny, 23rd June, 2022, Oral Presentation, PUBLISHED


Page 1 of 14
Award Date
Winner, Societal Impact Award, The Trinity Innovation Awards 2022
Fellow, The International Association for the Scientific Study of Intellectual and Developmental Disabilities (IASSIDD) 2022
Fellow, American Academy of Nursing 2020
Winner, Inaugural Impact Award, Health Research Board 2019
Chair, Ageing and Intellectual Disability 2014
Trinity Fellow April 2011
Clinical Fellowship in Nursing and Midwifery by the Health Research Board 1999
Nurse of the Year 1993
An international expert in the field of ageing and intellectual disability, Professor Mary McCarron is the founder and Principal Investigator of the first longitudinal study on ageing in people with an intellectual disability (IDS-TILDA) to be conducted within the EU and the only study, to date, with the potential to compare the ageing process in people with intellectual disability with the general population (TILDA). The recipient of the inaugural Health Research Board 2019 Impact Award, Prof McCarron's research excellence and translational activities have been recognised as exemplary. Her sustained efforts in including people with intellectual disabilities in all aspects of research was instrumental in securing an institutional Public, Patient Involvement award from the Health Research Board and Irish Research Council for Trinity College. Leading a research team focused upon ageing, intellectual disability, dementia, end of life and palliative care, Professor McCarron's work is at the forefront of addressing health and care inequities. Funded by the Health Research Board, Irish Hospice Foundation, The Atlantic Philanthropies, Department of Health, Irish Research Council, National Disability Authority, EIT Health and others, Professor McCarron's areas of focus are: Longitudinal epidemiological studies tracking the key determinants of health and wellbeing of adults with an intellectual Disability as they age. . Develop interventions models targeted at preventing secondary disability and improving quality of life and longevity for people with ID. . Longitudinal studies tracking over 20+ years the incidence, prevalence and risk factors associated with dementia in people with Down syndrome. . Working with relevant agencies to establish the first National Memory Clinic for people with ID with satellite services throughout the country with a focus on building capacity for assessment of symptoms of dementia and the standardization of assessment and diagnostic protocols. . Using a concerted and collaborative approach develop the infrastructure and networks required to establish and run large scale primary and secondary clinical trials. Work with international collaborators and the Global Brain Health Institute (GBHI) to develop and validate clinical trials outcome measures, and to develop pre dementia disease models by accumulating clinical and biomarker data with a focus on disease prevention and treatment in people with Down syndrome. . Work with people with ID and relevant agencies and policy makers to develop post diagnostic supports for people with ID and dementia and their caregivers and assess cost and quality of life issues in dementia care and end of life care. . Extending palliative care to persons with advanced and terminal dementia and other non-malignancies . Award-winning approaches to environmental design for those ageing with dementia;