Nov 16, 2023, Planet Radio: 3,500 people waiting for autism assessments in Dorset https://planetradio.co.uk/greatest-hits/dorset/news/thousands-wait-dorset-autism-assessment/
NHS Dorset is welcoming more Government funding to help clear a backlog Around 3,500 people in Dorset are currently waiting for a neurodevelopmental assessment - ahead of a possible autism diagnosis.
NHS bosses in the county say it can take up to two years to be seen by a clinician.
They've been welcoming an extra £1.5 million [$1.9M] of Government funding for the NHS across the country to reduce waits, which could directly impact at least 1,000 people on the waiting list in Dorset….
Dr David Freeman from NHS Dorset says the wait for an autism assessment 'can be hard' for those affected
David Freeman is Chief Commissioning Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer with NHS Dorset Integrated Care Board (ICB). He said:
“Nationally the demand for autism assessments has risen dramatically over the past 20 years, however investment in autism assessment capacity has not kept pace with this growth. We recognise that in Dorset some people are facing a very long wait for an assessment which can be hard, not just for themselves but also their parents, teachers and other family members who may be looking for additional support.
“We are therefore delighted that this additional funding has been made available from NHS England which will allow local healthcare organisations to make use of external assessors who are able to complete NICE compliant assessments, in order to reduce waiting times.
“I would personally like to thank everyone involved for their patience and reassure them we are doing everything we can to reduce waiting times in the county.”