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How do I get Ds assessed for autism?

(9 Posts)
AddictedtoLovely Wed 18-Jan-17 11:00:42

Just that really. Its been suggested by ds's nursery that he may have autism. If he doesn't he does have behaviour problens.


minipie Wed 18-Jan-17 11:23:56

I am not an expert (so others may well correct me) but I think it's as follows:

The usual route is by going to your GP with a list of your concerns about him/his behaviour. If you can take along something written up by the nursery, which sets out their concerns, that would be even better. (Ask nursery to do this if they haven't already).

Ask the GP to refer DS to a developmental paediatrician (NOT an ordinary paediatrician). They would probably be based at a hospital near you.

I would suggest before the GP appt you should have a look at the webpage of your nearest large hospital(s) to find the name of a developmental paediatrician, that way you can tell the GP who you want to be referred to and reduces the risk of being referred to the wrong sort of paediatrician.

Your GP might suggest a referral to CAHMS - from what I've read CAHMS are a very mixed bag in terms of proper diagnosis, so I would personally push to see a developmental paediatrician instead.

MsGee Wed 18-Jan-17 11:31:40

Here you have two choices,
1) pay for a private diagnosis, half day assessment, diagnosis on the day.
) go to your GP, who refer you to a Child Development Centre. You wait 18-24 months. Child is then assessed by SLT, and someone who observes during care/education setting, parents fill in a billion forms. You attend a day when they go through the forms, do a separate assessment on child (ADOS) and then you get a diagnosis.

Sorry if this sounds a bit blunt... What helped me whilst waiting for a diagnosis was to go on a parenting course for challenging behaviour, they gave great advice regardless of whether we got the diagnosis or not.

Also agree with above, do not be fobbed off with CAHMS, this added an extra 6 months to the above process for us (in the end we went for both private and NHS diagnosis).

AddictedtoLovely Wed 18-Jan-17 11:31:49

Thank you

MsGee Wed 18-Jan-17 11:39:30

Best of luck. I know it must be hard to hear, and it takes a while to get your head around just the process, and you feel that whatever the outcome it will be difficult. flowers

FWIW, my DD was not keen on nursery and would generally have a daily meltdown around lunchtime (sensory issues with noise, smells, people jostling her). I think she attacked the staff a bit (her favourite was to remove shoes and use as a missile). She has never thrown her shoes at a teacher in school smile

I'd be questioning what the nursery means by behaviour and if there is a pattern to it. If is is sensory the NAS does an amazing book on sensory issues for a tenner, which is brilliant.

OddJobsHat Wed 18-Jan-17 11:50:40

Have a look at the SN boards, lots of experience and advice there. I have ASD DC and went to GP, school wrote a supporting letter. GP referred DC to community paediatrics and (eventually) DC was assessed by paediatrician and then a further assessment via an observation in school by children with complex communication disorder team. Took about 2 years in all. It varies where you live, assessment process is not universal, some LA's and NHS authorities are better than others. Good luck!

Paddingtonthebear Wed 18-Jan-17 11:53:02

Out of interest does anyone know how much would a private diagnosis would cost?

MsGee Wed 18-Jan-17 11:56:53

We paid about £1200. She was a very well respected Clinical Psychologist, and it meant that in the NHS diagnosis we haven't had to repeat the ADOS process with my daughter.

It is a lot of money, and I am grateful that we were able to afford it as it did save my sanity (not to mention DDs).

minipie Wed 18-Jan-17 12:02:18

Daphne Keen is highly regarded and charges £820 for an initial assessment (2 hours). London based. Reportedly quite hard to get an appointment though.

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