Further consultations to follow soon


Member Appeal - Improvements to Assessing Autism and ADHD for Adults in Devon

Further to our email to members on 5th August, please find below a message from a new PADAN member, Tim.

Subject: campaign for decent ADHD and autism assessments in Plymouth

I am looking for people who want to campaign for a better service assessing adults for autism and ADHD in Devon. Thanks to PADAN, for sending out this email.

Things have become really bad in Plymouth. There's currently no-one here running assessments for adults on the NHS. People have been told they will have to get one privately if they want help. One friend was told they must pay £900 for an autism assessment. Some people have managed to get funding for a private assessment for ADHD, but many don't have that option. Private assessment is what Plymouth University's ADHD advice web page recommends. The situation in the rest of Devon is not much better. I have been told that waiting times for DAANA are about four years on average (that's the Devon Adult Autism and ADHD service). People risk losing employment and relationships while they wait for a diagnosis. Without one, we can't access support, reasonable adjustments, or medication.

I think this is unacceptable. I have tried to speak to the Clinical Commissioning Group who make decisions about services in Devon, but they've been very unhelpful. I had to wait months to get a response, since my Trade Union branch wrote to them last year. When they finally read out my questions at a meeting this month, they promised to reply, but I'm still waiting. It doesn't make sense to me, because we are only going to cost them more money while we wait, with all the health problems that come from a lack of support. That's why I think we have a good chance of getting them to change, if we can make them listen to us.

The first thing we need to do is get a few of us to meet and decide what to ask for. For example: What would a reasonable wait time be? Do we want the service in Plymouth to be run by Livewell Southwest (a private company), or should it be run by the NHS? How can they improve access for people who are more likely to be under-diagnosed, such as women with ADHD or autism?

We might not get everything we ask for, but I think we should tell them what we really need.

I definitely can't do this all myself, so we will need a few of us to start a campaign. I only have ADHD and I think it's important that some people with autism have a say in this too.

If you want to be part of this campaign in any way, please contact me. We need people to organise it, but any input you want to send would be helpful. Even if you don't want to say anything and just want to be sent updates about how the campaign is going, that's good as well.

My email is devonassessmentcampaign@riseup.net.

Thanks for reading!


Devon’s health and care system under extreme pressure

As you may be aware Devon’s health and care systems are under extreme pressure at the moment.

Plymouth University Hospitals Trust have released an important update and advice on the situation, you can find more information here.

You can also find live waiting times for local Urgent Care (Emergency Departments and Minor Injury Units) here.

Please remember that if you are unwell and feel you need advice then please do feel able to contact 111 or visit your nearest Urgent Care/Minor Injury Unit for assistance. If you are unsure if your problem can wait until your GP surgery is next open then please ring 111 who will be more than happy to guide you further.

Healthwatch are also keen to have feedback on your experiences with 111 and local Emergency Care visits, we have links to their surveys lower down on this page for you to use to contact Healthwatch direct.

Share your experience of using the Derriford Hospital Emergency Department

Healthwatch have asked for our members help, we recently received the below request for your input on any recent experiences you have had when visiting Derriford Hospital Emergency Department.

Have you, or a loved one, used the Derriford Hospital emergency department (ED) in Plymouth in the last 2 months?

Due to the increased pressure on EDs across our local hospitals, we've been asked by the NHS Devon Clinical Commissioning Group and local hospital trusts to find out about ED experiences from people in Devon.

We'd like to know more about your experience, including:

- Why did you go to the ED?

- How did you find the experience?

- What worked well, and what didn't go so well?

- Were you signposted there, if so by who?

- Was the ED the most appropriate choice for your needs?

To share your experience about Derriford Hospital ED, please:

Click here to fill in our feedback form.

Email us at info@hwdevon-plymouth-torbay.org

Or call our contact centre team FREE on 0800 520 0640

It’s our job at Healthwatch to listen to what people like about services and what could be improved, then share those views with those who have the power to make change happen!

Share your recent experiences of using and accessing a GP.

Healthwatch Plymouth are hoping to hear experiences from people all across the city about the following, so that local health services can gain an understanding of public experiences…

What are your recent experiences of using and accessing local GP services?

Our team would like to find out:

• Have you had trouble getting an appointment, or issues getting in touch with a GP?

• Were you able to see your GP in person – if so, how long did you have to wait?

• When you got to see a GP were they able to help?

We want to hear experiences from the public so services can understand what is or isn't working, so please forward this call for feedback on to any individual or group who may have a story to share.

Anyone can share feedback by:

Leaving feedback about GP services on our website: healthwatchplymouth.co.uk.

Calling our contact centre team FREE on 0800 520 0640

Or by emailing info@hwdevon-plymouth-torbay.org

Sharing feedback takes moments, but the effects could last a lifetime!

Plymouth City Council website link for Public Consultations affecting residents within their boundary area.

Please find current link for the Plymouth City Council Portal for their ongoing and new Public Consultations.