The Autism Spectrum Assessment Team (ASDAT) are a multi-disciplinary assessment team consisting of psychiatrists, clinical psychologists, speech and language therapists, occupational therapists and nurses. They will carry out assessments to look at whether your child may have autism (or an autism spectrum disorder).
Before the appointment we will send you forms to complete and will also send a form to your child’s school to complete (if they are home-schooled please talk to us about this and we will try and gather further information from another person who knows them instead). It is important that we have this information before the appointment as we cannot complete our assessment without it.
Your appointment will usually be with two clinicians; one of them will spend time with the parent / guardian in order to take a comprehensive history about your child’s development and current presentation; they will also ask you questions about your own life and experiences, and your family history. The other clinician will usually carry out an ADOS assessment, which is a play / talk based assessment designed to show us whether your child might have autism.
Following this appointment, there are a number of possible outcomes:
- We may tell you and your child if they have autism on the same day
- We may need to discuss our assessments in our multi-disciplinary team meeting; we will then contact you by telephone to discuss the outcome (this can take a few weeks)
- We may decide to do further assessments such as
- A language assessment by a speech and language therapist
- A coordination / sensory assessment by an occupational therapist
- An assessment of your child’s learning by a psychologist
- A school observation
Following any additional assessments, we will discuss our assessments in our multi-disciplinary team meeting; we will then contact you by telephone to discuss the outcome (this can take a few weeks). The team will also consider whether other factors may be impacting on your child’s presentation, such as concentration and inattention, coordination, language, learning or life experiences.
If your child is under 5.5 a multiagency diagnostic panel will meet to review the information that has been gathered and a conclusion reached . You will be advised of the outcome on the telephone
Once we have told you about the outcome of the assessment by telephone (or face to face on the day), we will send out the reports to you. You can then contact us to request a follow-up meeting if you have any questions or would like further advice about supports available for you and your child.
As we are an assessment service, we cannot offer any further support or intervention / treatment. However, we will try and signpost you to services who might be able to offer the help that you need.