Autism Diagnostic Service (LADS)

Service Impact due to COVID-19
Update February 2022

Our service is extremely popular – and we receive referrals both from GPs and directly from members of the public.

We are currently resourced to provide 40 autism assessments per month. However we’ve seen a big surge in demand over the last year – both from increased awareness of autism as a condition, and from patients who’ve not sought help during periods of lockdown during the pandemic.

Over the last year we have received 60-80 referrals per month, and in January 2022 we received an unprecedented 120 referrals. As a result, we have a growing waiting list: currently people are waiting 3-6 months for a first appointment, and 12-18 months to complete the full assessment process.

We are working as hard as we can to meet this increased demand and we are proud that our service is accessible to all. However, it will take time for us to recover from the impact of the pandemic. If you are already undergoing an autism assessment, and you haven’t heard from the service in some time, please be patient. There is a waiting list for every stage of the assessment process, and we are working through it as fast as we can.

Thank you for your consideration.

Quote from a former patient's experience

Read more: A former patient’s experience

The Leeds Autism Diagnostic Service provides autism assessment for people of all intellectual ability, who may have autism and live in Leeds.

The assessment is provided by a team of mental health and learning disability professionals with specialist knowledge of autism.

We accept referrals from healthcare professionals and directly from individuals who need an autism assessment (self-referrals). Our service is for people over the age of 18, of any intellectual ability (IQ), who are registered with a Leeds GP.   This includes people who also have a learning disability or other neurodevelopmental condition.

If autism is diagnosed, what next?

If you receive a diagnosis of autism, you will be offered a one-off follow-up appointment where guidance and advice is provided. You can find out more about what to expect on our Information for Service Users page.

Training

The team provides free training for Leeds NHS mental health and learning disability teams.  We may be able to provide autism training to other organisations for a fee.  You can find out more about this offer on our Information for Professionals page.

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