An Ipswich mother is welcoming a review of the provision of ADHD services by NHS England in the face of rising waiting times. 

Last week NHS England announced the launch of a major review of attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) services to improve care provided to people and reduce waiting times. 

National healthcare company Nuffield Trust also welcomed the move saying the NHS needed a 'radical rethink' of its mental health services

Its chief executive Thea Stein said: “The extraordinary, unpredicted and unprecedented rise in demand for autism assessments and ADHD treatments have completely overtaken the NHS’s capacity to meet them.

"It is frankly impossible to imagine how the system can grow fast enough to fulfil this demand."

Ipswich Star: Nuffield Health say that NHS needs a 'radical re-think'Nuffield Health say that NHS needs a 'radical re-think'


Frankie Jones, a mother from Ipswich, said that she has felt the need for change for a while. 

She had noticed her then 10-year-old son was exhibiting behaviours that she believed would call for an ADHD assessment. 

However, they were put on a 50-week long waiting list to get their first appointment, and have been put on a further 40-week long waiting list for the test. 

"When we started this process he was 10 years old, by the time we have a diagnosis he would be 12," Ms Jones added. 

"I feel we forget that kids like my son need all the support that they can get to live with neurodivergence, but with such a long waiting list that process is slowly taken away from them."

Ipswich Star: Local chairty group Autism and ADHD work closely to provide support to the people of SuffolkLocal chairty group Autism and ADHD work closely to provide support to the people of Suffolk (Image: Michelle Chisholm)

They aren't alone in having to deal with long waiting lists for getting an ADHD diagnosis. 

Currently, at the East Suffolk and North Essex Foundation Trust, children wait up to 62 weeks to be seen for a first appointment and then a further  52 weeks wait for an ASD or ADHD assessment - making the process more than two years long.

Local charities such as Autism and ADHD are working to get support to all people in their community.

Sophie Hopkins, who has volunteered for them and is a local mental health activist, said: "We need a change in the NHS, the waits for a diagnosis for children cannot be this long.

"They need the support as soon as possible, to take them through school and help them accept their disability."