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(UK) Hampshire: 18K students on waitlist for ADHD/AUTISM services

Nov 18, 2023, Basingstoke Gazette: Figures find thousands of children with autism or ADHD in Hampshire

S. Central England

New figures show there are around 18,000 cases of children with autism and ADHD across Hampshire and the Isle of Wight.

During Hampshire County Council’s Children and Young People Select Committee, an updated report about the current situation on caseload and the waiting list for children with autism and ADHD (attention deficit hyperactivity disorder) was presented.

CAMHS (Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services) and Psicon Ltd, which provides diagnosis assessments for autism, ADHD and mental wellbeing, hold together an approximate caseload of 5,100 children and young people in Hampshire local authority.

This figure represents only a fraction of the total need.

The broader integrated care system (ICS) caseload for autism, a developmental disability caused by differences in the brain, and ADHD, which includes symptoms such as being restless and having trouble concentrating, across all ages stands at a substantial 18,000 individuals.

The ICS average waiting time for an assessment is about 13 months, with some regions experiencing delays of up to 29 months depending on age range and service area.

Provision and timeliness of support services vary considerably across the Hampshire, Isle of Wight, Portsmouth, and Southampton (HIOW) footprint where the ICS plans and provides health services….

The demand for these services has significantly outpaced existing funding, with the current structure falling short by an estimated 84 per cent.
This funding gap has been exacerbated by a system-wide focus on diagnosis-led care, which has driven up demand without adequate resources.

To tackle the current pressures, the ICB said it has taken several measures to address the pressure and improve services for all children and young people, including reducing waiting times and promoting equitable access to care.

One of the significant developments is the creation of a centralised dashboard that allows for monitoring performance data, demand, and capacity. This will enable the ICB to identify areas for improvement and allocate resources effectively.

The care board has also secured funding to expand the NHSE Autism in Schools project across Hampshire, focusing on providing early identification and support for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) in the school environment.

Additionally, the ICB has collaborated with Hampshire County Council, Public Health, and the Hampshire Autism Partnership to develop a new Local Authority Autism Strategy and Mental Health Wellbeing Strategy.


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