ADHD funding ends long waits

SUFFOLK: Long waiting times to treat children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder have today been scrapped thanks to a funding injection.Six months ago some children had to wait up to 18 months to get treated for ADHD, however after health chiefs from NHS Suffolk ploughed �59,000 into the service, the list has now been completely cleared.

SUFFOLK: Long waiting times to treat children with attention-deficit hyperactivity disorder have today been scrapped thanks to a funding injection.

Six months ago some children had to wait up to 18 months to get treated for ADHD, however after health chiefs from NHS Suffolk ploughed �59,000 into the service, the list has now been completely cleared.

The cash paid for filling specialist vacancies within the Suffolk Mental Health Partnership Trust, which then meant the waiting list could be tackled efficiently.

NHS Suffolk has earmarked a further �147,000 to develop and improve the service on an ongoing basis.

Tracy Dowling, director of strategic commissioning at NHS Suffolk, said: “There has been increased demand for ADHD treatment and we have responded, working closely with our partners within the Suffolk Mental Health Partnership Trust to develop a service that offers the very best for children with this condition.

“This has involved filling specialist vacancies in the appropriate medical and nursing posts, including mental health professionals.”

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Julia Rock, child and adolescent mental health project manager at Suffolk Mental Health Partnership Trust, said: “Clearing the waiting list has been a priority for us and our recognition goes to all the staff who have worked on this. We are delighted that by collaborative working we have been able to address the needs of local children and families.”

The picture was very different in 2002. A survey done by the charity ADHD In Suffolk found that ten per cent of children were on a waiting list for longer than a year, and in one case, more than six years.

In April this year it was reported that there was an 18-month long waiting list for children to be assessed by ADHD specialists. During a meeting of the Suffolk County Council's ruling executive, members were told that many children were left in limbo due to the delays in diagnoses.

Are you a parent who has a child with ADHD and want to tell us your experiences? Write to Your Letters, Evening Star, 30 Lower Brook Street, Ipswich, IP4 1AN, or e-mail eveningstarletters@eveningstar.co.uk.

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