What will happen at the assessment?
When your child/young person’s name comes to the top of the waiting list we allocate a lead clinician to work with parents and the child/young person. The clinician will send you an appointment letter. In the team, we have a wide range of professionals. These include:
- Clinical and Educational Psychologists
- Specialist Occupational Therapists
- Specialist Speech and Language Therapists
- A Learning Disability Nurse
- A Paediatrician
- A Psychiatrist
- A Psychotherapist
The assessment process will be led by one of these professionals on behalf of the team. At the first appointment, the lead clinician will meet with parents/carers without the child present. This is a lengthy appointment and can last up to 3 hours. At this appointment, parents will be led through a series of questions so that we fully understand the child’s development and difficulties since they were young. Parents may ask any questions they wish or explore any issues important to them at this appointment.
At this appointment, an assessment plan will be agreed between parents and the lead clinician. Some children may require a range of appointments others may only require 1 or 2 appointments. This plan depends on how much is already known about a child and what may need further assessment.
After each step in the assessment process, the lead clinician may wish to gain views from colleagues in the wider team or from other services. The lead will let you know about this process and when it will happen. Some children may also need to be seen at home or at school. Once the assessment is started the appointments will be fairly close together. Most children’s appointments are spread over just 2 to 3 weeks.
At the conclusion of the assessment, the lead clinician will meet with parents/carers and/or the child. At this final appointment, the outcomes from the assessment will be explained, a diagnosis may be given or an alternative explanation for difficulties offered. Whether or not to include the child/young person in this appointment will be decided between parents and the lead clinician.