The Western Trust has indicated that due to the complexities of individual cases the time frame for autism diagnoses for both children and adults is generally variable.
The health authority confirmed that decisions on diagnoses will be taken over time and in full consultation with parents and families in the cases of children.
“Within Children’s ASD service a diagnostic decision will be given when it is clinically appropriate to do so,” it stated.
“The time taken is variable. This decision may occur at a multi-professional meeting which parents may attend. However, there are times when it is clinically appropriate to delay a decision/review a child’s progress at a later date.
“This may be due to parental request or to allow further opportunity for development and/ or clinical interventions to occur. This is agreed by all at a multi-professional meeting in consultation with parents/family. A time frame for review is agreed with all involved,” said the trust.
Similarly, adult diagnoses are also taken over time and are largely determined by the complexity of individual cases.
“The time taken to rule out ASD is variable and depends on the individual and their associated complexities.
“As a consequence there is not an average time in which the observational element of the assessment is completed,” the trust confirmed.