ADHD campaigners will "stop at nothing"

Campaigners who want better support for adults with a behaviour disorder say they will "stop at nothing" until they achieve their goal.

Charity workers Minoo Noorbakhsh and Emma Cooper say that people living in Harrow with Attention Deficit Hyperactive Disorder (ADHD) have no access to any specialist clinics in the borough.

Patients with ADHD have a short attention span and are restless, easily distracted and constantly fidget. The condition, which is commonly diagnosed in childhood, can have a different impact on adults, as they may find it difficult to hold down a job.

Ms Noorbakhsh, who has worked as an ADHD specialist coach at the ADHD & Autism Support charity in Chicheley Road, Harrow, for the last nine years, says there are currently no services for adults in the borough. She says a specialised adult ADHD clinic with a psychiatrist was set up at Honeypot Lane Medical Practice, in Stanmore, under NHS guidelines, in 2008.

But since September 2011, people in Harrow have not been able to access the clinic.

Ms Noorbakhsh said: “The clinic was great when it was set up, but eight months ago they stopped accepting referrals from Harrow residents, have not given a reason and ignore letters sent by patients. They are only seeing patients from other boroughs, such as Hillingdon, and that makes no sense.

"Services for adults with ADHD are scarce, but we need to give them the support they need.

“It’s like depriving someone who is short-sighted of glasses. I believe we have grounds for a serious complaint and we will stop at nothing.”

ADHD & Autism Support helps runs monthly support groups for adults affected by the condition, and also offers services like anger management workshops and one-to-one support groups.

But Ms Cooper, who also works as an ADHD specialist coach at the charity, said patients needed more clinical support. She added that because GPs are not skilled experts in the field, it is vital to have a psychiatrist on hand to prescribe medication and monitor their progress.

Ms Cooper said the group is now lobbying the PCT and urging them not to deprive adults in Harrow of the “vital” service.

She said: “It’s frustrating, because we keep hammering down a door we know won’t be opened unless we take serious action.”

A statement from NHS Harrow said that it wanted to ensure that ADHD patients in the area receive the “right kind of care and support” for their individual needs.

It added: “We have redirected funding to develop a service where each request for ADHD care is reviewed on an individual basis.

“Following appropriate assessment, specialist clinicians will work to develop a plan that meets the unique needs of each patient. This will ensure that residents have access to high quality, patient focussed service close to home.”

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