Adult autism and ADHD

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Assessment in North Yorkshire and York

Patient information

The existing adult autism and ADHD assessment pathway for York and North Yorkshire was commissioned in 2021. Since that time there has been a significant increase in referrals that has resulted in long waiting times for assessment.

We are currently piloting an approach which introduces use of an online platform to help:

  • Identify those with the most urgent clinical need for referral first
  • Provide support for people while they wait for an assessment

The online referral platform includes specific modules developed by clinicians in North Yorkshire and York. All those who complete the profiler will receive immediate functional guidance and a unique profile describing strengths, challenges, and the skills to develop at home, socially and in the workplace.

Intelligence from the online platform can help us develop relevant programmes and workshops for people needing support, including targeted information about functional skills such as time management, organisation, dealing with anxiety and low mood and understanding local pathways to services. This is consistent with what people have told us they want – additional support both while they wait for an assessment and after (see May 2021 engagement report).

The pilot was first introduced in March 2023 and we are continue to amend our approach based on the feedback we receive from patients, clinicians and the community. You can read more about the pilot and its evolution in the links below.

Through autumn 2023 we will continue engagement to help us develop and introduce a sustainable approach to adult autism and ADHD, particularly ensuring that people get support both before and after assessment.

Autumn engagement will include face-to-face and virtual focus groups with people seeking a diagnosis and those who have received a diagnosis, carers and family members, and local support groups. We will be sharing more details soon on how to get involved.

The adult autism and ADHD assessment and diagnosis service pathway can be found here.

You can find the Integrated Impact Assessment for adult autism and ADHD Assessment Service York and North Yorkshire – Referral Criteria here. This document may be amended as additional learning and feedback is analysed.

Autism is a lifelong developmental condition which affects how people communicate and interact with the world. Autism is a spectrum condition and affects people in different ways. Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a condition that affects people’s behaviour. People with ADHD can seem restless, may have trouble concentrating and may act on impulse. The following links provide further information and resources relating to Autism and ADHD:

Engagement

Summary of December engagement – York and North Yorkshire adult autism and ADHD

Note from ICB and York Disability Rights Forum Meeting: 7 December 2023

Engagement Plan – York and North Yorkshire Adult ADHD and Autism Services (Autumn 2023)


Pilot: online platform

The North Yorkshire and York Platform for Adult Autism and ADHD Referral (originally called the Do IT profiler, but now renamed as it includes additional modules specific to North Yorkshire and York) has been introduced as part of the current pilot approach.

Neurodiverse conditions are complex and interrelated, they have high levels of symptom commonality with other conditions. The online platform takes a dimensional approach which consider an individual’s unique needs as a whole, rather than determining whether the individual fits certain diagnostic criteria and providing support only if these diagnostic criteria are met. Dimensional approaches are needs-led rather than diagnosis-led. A shift away from categorical approaches towards more holistic, profile-based, dimensional approaches have been suggested by some psychiatrists.

This approach creates a formulation-based assessment and management plan based on all of an individual’s needs, whether they group neatly into diagnostic criteria or not. The key areas of challenge for that individual are identified with respect to their current social and physical environment and appropriate, holistic support is provided.

Dimensional approaches are also typically person-centred – they put the person first and consider them as an individual rather than a category or type. Person-centred approaches are often based on a biopsychosocial model of disability.

The approach taken with Do-IT Profiler is to understand the person in the context of their lives past and present and deliver contextual guidance dependent on the specific profile.

Following additional feedback from our communities in October 2023 the pilot currently enables:

  • Everyone registered with the platform the opportunity to remain on the waiting list for assessment.
  • Health professionals to make direct referrals for people unable to access the online platform. First Contact Mental Health Professionals in Primary Care (GP surgeries) are also supporting people to access this.

Where can I access additional support?

Local NHS Mental Health Crisis Line

In a mental health emergency, call the Tees, Esk and Wear Valleys NHS Foundation Trust Crisis Line. The line is open 24/7 for people living in County Durham, Darlington, Teesside, North Yorkshire and York. Call: 0800 0516 171.

SHOUT mental health support

Shout is a 24/7 text service available for anyone in crisis anytime, anywhere. It’s a place to go if you’re struggling to cope and are looking for immediate help. You can text them on 85258.

The Haven York

Are you feeling distressed, anxious or that things are too much? York Safe Haven offers free mental health support for anyone aged over 16. Visit 30 Clarence Street, York, YO31 7DE. Email: haven.mhm@nhs.net. Call: 07483 141310. 

Mind Crisis Cafes

MIND crisis cafes are available to access locally covering Scarborough, Whitby, Ryedale, Harrogate, Ripon and York. You can use their online tool to find your closest cafe. Call: 0300 123 3393. Email: info@mind.org.uk.

North Yorkshire Connect 

North Yorkshire Connect is a council website that helps users find local groups, services and activities.

Everything Autism

Everything Autism provides highly specialist and timely assessments to explore a formal identification of autism (diagnosis). They are a neuro-affirming service, celebrating diversity of brain types.

Call: 07496 219645

Email: Info@everythingautism.co.uk

Everyday Enable

Based at Community House in Selby, Everyday Enable offer benefit support, form filling, advice, training, talks, bus pass applications and blue badge applications.

Email: jo@everydayenable.co.uk

Castaway Music Theatre

Castaway Music Theatre is an arts charity creating life-changing opportunities for young people and adults with learning and physical disabilities, autism conditions and mental health difficulties. It offers weekly performing, training, educational and recreational opportunities in music, drama, contemporary dance, film and multimedia, led by professional artists.

Neurodiverse parents group

This is an informal group available to parents and carers of neurodiverse children to share advice and support each other. It is located at:

The Summit, Scott Road, Selby, YO8 4BL.

For dates times and more info email: neurodiverseparentgroupselby@outlook.com

North Yorkshire and York Talking Therapies

North Yorkshire and York Talking Therapies can help you with feelings of stress, low mood and worry. This is also a self referral service. Call: 

  • Harrogate: 01423 852137
  • Hambleton and Richmondshire: 01609 768890
  • Scarborough, Whitby and Ryedale: 01947 899270
  • York: 01904 556840

Sparks project

Sparks is a Scarborough based organisation that offer free one on one confidential appointments and initial assessments starting with a cuppa and a chat. They identify issues and agree on a plan of action to resolve problems of all kinds, to help you feel better and able to move forward.

Recovery college online

It’s important to understand your mental health and wellbeing, in order to make informed decisions based on information you understand. The Recovery College Online provides a range of online educational courses and resources to people who might be struggling with mental health issues.

Autism Central

Autism Central is a peer education programme. It aims to build knowledge and understanding of autism and empower families and carers to advocate for autistic people they support. This includes local support. Email: info@autismcentral.org.uk.

Autism Plus

Autism plus is a leading Yorkshire charity who are empowering more people every day to achieve more than they had dared to dream was possible.

They aim to do more to offer support and interventions at earlier stages to provide positive long term impacts. With the right support, at the right time people can live happy, independent lives.

Unique Friends

Unique Friends are a not for profit organisation that provide activities, support, and information to children, young people and adults with Special Educational Needs and Disabilities aged 0-99 years and their families.

They are based at The Annex in Gilberdyke and welcome families from the surrounding areas of East Yorkshire.

National Autistic Society

The National Autistic Society offers support and guidance to the 700,000 autistic people in the UK and their families.

This includes running specialist schools, campaigning for improved rights or training companies on being more autism-friendly, we are dedicated to transforming lives and changing attitudes.

Neurodiversity Support Group – Selby

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