What to expect from the assessment

Our service covers the following age ranges for assessments:

Autism: 11-18
ADHD: 6-18

Once your referral/screening is accepted, the young person will be placed on a waiting list. Unfortunately, the need for our service means this could be up to two years. 

This assessment may involve a number of different meetings and clinical assessments. 

For example:

  • A Developmental History Assessment which may involve a questionnaire, face-to-face or online appointment with you to discuss the young person in more detail.  This will include talking about past and current difficulties and strengths, along with asking you about the young person's general development and family history. 
  • Getting updates with any other agencies that are involved in the young person's care
  • Contact with the young person's school for an update on general progress – socially and academically.
  • Meeting the young person to observe their behaviour and to ask them about their view.

As part of the observation we may also undertake a QB Test (ADHD) or ADOS test (Autism). The order of these assessments may vary.

We will keep in touch with you throughout this process.

This information will then be discussed by our professional team and then the outcome of the assessments will either be a diagnosis, agreement of complex presentation or a non-diagnosis.

What happens next

If your child or young person is diagnosed with autism you will be signposted to services that can offer support. ADHD diagnoses are offered access to an online webinar, known as a psychoeducation session.

Where it is difficult to make a diagnosis, due to a complex presentation, further assessments may be needed.

Where a diagnosis has not been concluded, the young person and family will be offered support and information.

Our current pathway only addresses ADHD and Autism, but we acknowledge that there are many more neurodevelopmental conditions, which include: TICS, Tourette's, Foetal Alcohol Syndrome and Specific Learning Difficulties.

Waiting times

Unfortunately, the need for our service at this time means that the current waiting times may be more than two years before we are able to assess the young person. We will write to you when an appointment becomes available. 

To help us focus our efforts on seeing young people on our waiting list and offer appointments as soon as possible, we would be grateful if you could only contact the service if your child's presentation changes significantly. 

Urgent help

For immediate help and advice:

NHS 111
Tel: 111

Tel: 0300 123 3393 or text 86463

Tel: 116123 (free)

Child line
Tel: 0800 1111 (free)

YoungMinds Parent Helpline
Tel: 0808 802 5544

YoungMinds Crisis Messenger (Shout)
Text: YM to 85258
If you are a young person struggling to cope, text YM to 85258 for free, 24/7 support.

Sussex Mental Health line (for 16 years +)
Tel: 0300 500 101