Children and Young People’s Autism Service (South Staffordshire) update
Within our health and social care settings we ask that you continue to:
- Wear a fluid-resistant surgical mask at all times (unless exempt from doing so) – this will be supplied at the entrance
- Maintain 2 metres distance from others
- Wash your hands for at least 20 seconds more frequently
We remain committed to continuing to provide as full a service as possible. A duty professional remains available via the service contact number on 0300 303 0691 MondayFriday, 9 am-5 pm to offer help and support to families.
Welcome to this first update from the Children and Young People’s Autism Service in South Staffordshire for 2022.
Assessments and interventions
We continue to work as hard as we can to ensure families awaiting to commence an autism assessment are seen as soon as possible. Your patience and understanding are very much appreciated.
As a reminder, any family currently awaiting an assessment appointment for new assessments only and are happy to receive a late notification are asked to email the team at email@example.com with their details so that we can get in touch should an appointment become available at short notice.
The previous 12 months has been challenging as we’ve worked hard to offer the best possible service to children, young people and their families during the ongoing Covid pandemic. We’re fully committed to doing all we can to further improve, which is why the focus of this edition is on sharing some of our plans and ambitions for 2022.
One of the big success stories for the service has been the introduction of the Peer Support Worker role and the service is looking to further develop this important position following the great feedback we’ve received from families, who have commented that it has provided a ‘lived experience’ in autism that has proven invaluable for young people and parent/carers in the delivery of our Autism Toolbox workshops.
The role of Peer Support Worker has been filled brilliantly by Fiona Mills and our thanks go to Fiona for all that she has done. With her support, we have developed a new workshop for young people aged 14-19 to provide advice and support in relation to further education
and careers options. The first of these workshops is planned for January with future dates to be confirmed over the coming months. Any young people or families interested in attending are asked to please call the office on 0300 303 0691 for further information.
Our innovative Autism Toolbox has been a major success story for the team and we’re proud of the support it has provided to many families. We are currently finalising the development of a digital platform for the Autism Toolbox workshops – this will provide families with greater access to the sessions as part of a comprehensive e-learning support package that can be viewed at any time, making it a really convenient and valuable resource for parents/carers and young people.
The team is committed to continuing to work closely with colleagues within MPFT and with external organisations to support families with joint appointments arranged where appropriate to meet the needs of children and young people.
One of the external organisations we’ve worked especially closely with has been Caudwell Children, which has offered a number of autism assessments via its purpose-built centre.
We continue to work in partnership with Caudwell to ensure families are seen more swiftly and would ask that you get in touch if you would like more details on this, or if you have previously declined to be seen by Caudwell, but now wish to reconsider. You can find out more about Caudwell at www.caudwellchildren.com.
We look forward to welcoming new clinical and admin staff to the team during 2022 to support with both assessments and interventions. In the coming months, the team will be recruiting Clinical Psychologists, an Occupational Therapist and a Speciality Doctor to further enhance the team’s offer.
We would also welcome interest from any parents or carers who would wish to be part of future interview panels for new team members. Please call the office on 0300 303 0691 to confirm your interest.
Finally, we wish to say a big thank you to all our families for how they have engaged and worked with us throughout 2021, and look forward to this continuing in 2022.
There are several ways to provide feedback on your experiences relating to the service:
1. Families are provided with a feedback form following completion of their assessment, intervention or when attending a workshop. We would be grateful if these could be returned as your comments and ideas provide valuable knowledge of what we are doing well and where we can review or improve.
2. An online feedback form, available by clicking here
3. The Trust’s Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) and Experience is happy to receive comments and suggestions you may have to improve the Autism service or any other service provided by the Trust. You can find out more at www.mpft.nhs.uk/service users-carers/complaints-concerns-and-compliments. The team will aim to return your call within 24 hours between 9.30 am-4.30 pm, Monday to Friday (excluding Bank Holidays).
- Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
- Freephone: 0800 783 2865
- A website form is also available via the website link above
Telephone: 0300 303 0691 (9 am-5 pm, Monday to Friday; excluding Bank Holidays)
More information about the service can be found via MPFT’s website at www.mpft.nhs.uk/services/children-and-young-people-autism-service, which features:
Referral information (NB: Referrals into the service can only be made by a professional who has met with the child and family)
- Meet the team section
- Resources and factsheets
- Autism Toolbox – Workshops
- Information should urgent help be required
- Previous service updates
- Frequently asked questions
- Contact details for a number of other useful services and organisations
If you need urgent help between the hours of 9 am-5 pm from Monday to Friday, you can call 0300 303 0691, or call First Response (social care and health) on 0800 1313 126. If you need urgent help out of hours (evenings, weekends or bank holidays) please contact:
- NHS 111, who have access to on-call mental health professionals;
- or the First Response Emergency Duty Team on 0345 604 2886
- In the event of a medical emergency please go straight to A&E.
The Trust’s 24/7 urgent NHS mental health service provides telephone support, advice and triage for all ages. The Freephone number to call for people living in South Staffordshire is 0808 196 3002.
Should a parent/carer have a specific question relating to the care of their child, we ask that they email email@example.com