Wording of a letter to support a child with undiagnosed medical needs

(7 Posts)
AGenie Fri 09-Sep-16 21:56:20

Hi,

I wondered if I might ask for a bit of help with the wording for a letter from a GP to support a child with undiagnosed medical needs?

My son gets a lot of viruses which always last 10 days or more. Sending him back earlier just makes him get ill again. Our headmistress has figured out that if she gives him pre-emptive afternoons off when he is getting tired then he avoids actually becoming ill and just bounces right back after two or three afternoons of rest.

Last term the head was just letting him go home in the afternoons after registration but she's not allowed to do that this year unless I bring in a letter with a formal named diagnosis, and that is hard as we do not have a formal diagnosis.

A MNer on the health forum pointed out to me that the guidelines say nothing about a diagnosis, and actually just say that the afternoons off just have to be in ds's "best interests". The head is happy to write to my GP to say that he was clearly much better with his occasional afternoons off. If the GP could then write back saying "that's great, they are clearly in his best interests, keep doing it" without giving a formal diagnosis, then that would solve our problem.

I just wondered if anybody knows whether such a letter would actually be good enough?

The "best interests" bit is a footnote in

www.gov.uk/government/uploads/system/uploads/attachment_data/file/306952/Statutory_guidance_on_supporting_pupils_at_school_with_medical_conditions.pdf

"5 All children must receive a full time education, unless this would not be in their best interests because of
their health needs"

The full details of the story are in this thread below. I didn't reiterate them here as it's a bit long.

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/childrens_health/2728614-How-to-get-a-letter-of-support-of-undiagnosed-child-health-problem?watched=1&msgid=63507809#63507809

Thanks!

Witchend Sat 10-Sep-16 00:18:26

Last year my GP wrote something along the lines of:
"I have seen this young patient of mine several times and he is not recovering as quickly as expected from an unknown illness. I trust his mother to be able to judge whether he would benefit from afternoon absence for the foreseeable future."
School was happy with that, and he had the,afternoons off for most of a term, with no problem from a notoriously strict on absence,school.

AGenie Sat 10-Sep-16 06:29:57

Witchend That's wonderful. What age was your son at that time? Mine is 6.

fittedcupboard Sat 10-Sep-16 07:59:41

You can ask but as a GP I wouldn't do that. He's either I'll enough hat he needs investigating; I would offer to refer him to paediatrics to see if there's a reason for these prolonged illnesses; or they are just viral illnesses. These letters carry significant medico-legal responsibility. Don't be offended if your gp refuses.

AGenie Sat 10-Sep-16 08:30:26

fittedcupboard Thanks for that. I'd be glad to have your thoughts on the medical side. Is there any chance that you would have a quick look at this thread? I put the details there.

www.mumsnet.com/Talk/childrens_health/2728614-How-to-get-a-letter-of-support-of-undiagnosed-child-health-problem?watched=1&msgid=63512034#63512034

fittedcupboard Sat 10-Sep-16 11:23:00

Obvious caveat that I haven't seen him and so can't give medical advice, but from the thread it would seem that you need an up to date sleep opinion and sleep study.

AGenie Sat 10-Sep-16 12:31:55

Thanks, I'll look into that.

Join the discussion

Join the discussion

Registering is free, easy, and means you can join in the discussion, get discounts, win prizes and lots more.

Register now