Autism Diagnostic Service (LADS)
Waiting time update
|Waiting list update January 2023
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 two years. We think this is because of greater public awareness of autism and also the impact of the Covid pandemic.
We now typically receive 100 or more referrals per month. As a result, we have a growing waiting list.
If you are referred to us in January 2023, you can expect to wait around 15 months for a first appointment.
The full assessment process, from first appointment to final diagnosis, is currently taking around 18 months.
Please note these are average figures. Your own waiting time may be shorter or longer than this.
We are working as hard as we can to meet the increased demand, and we are proud that our service is accessible to all. However, please be aware that you will have to wait for an autism assessment with us. 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.
Whilst people are waiting for their first appointment, we recommend looking at the information for service users and useful links and resources sections on our website.
Thank you for your consideration.
Example: Lucy was referred to LADS in January 2023. She was seen for an initial appointment in April 2024. The final appointment took place in October 2025 and Lucy received her diagnostic outcome.
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.
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.