A diagnostic assessment for Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) is an extremely important process, that should include assessments and input from a number of different professionals e.g. speech and language therapist, occupational therapist, clinical psychologist.
A diagnostic assessment utilises a combination of clinical interview and observation, previous reports and standardised tests to determine whether or not the person meets DSM5 diagnostic criteria for an autism spectrum condition, whether other conditions are also present, and whether further assessment is needed.
Your child can be referred for a diagnostic assessment via your GP to your local CAMHS team, or you can refer to a private clinic such as Every Mind.
The Assessment Process
1. Please contact the clinic via email or telephone. You will speak to our Receptionist, Claire, who collect some further information regarding your child, the concerns you have, and what has prompted you to consider an ASD diagnostic assessment. If you have not seen any other professionals regarding your concerns prior to contacting Every Mind, Claire will recommend an optional 'screening' appointment with one of our highly trained clinical psychologists.
2. 'Screening' Appointment. This optional appointment with one of our highly trained clinical psychologists will be an opportunity to meet your child to help decide if a formal diagnostic assessment is the best route to take at this time. The psychologist may suggest progressing to a formal assessment, which we can arrange after this appointment, or she may suggest an alternative route, which she can discuss at this meeting. This session is generally quite relaxed with opportunities for play or discussion (depending on your child's age). During the screening appointment, the psychologist will also be considering sensory and motor differences. If any are observed or discussed, an Occupational Therapy assessment will be suggested as part of the ASD diagnostic assessment.
3. Diagnostic assessment. This includes:
- A full and comprehensive parental interview to capture the developmental history (4-6 hours long)
- A direct observation of your child within the clinic (1 hour)
- A school observation and information collected from school staff
We also have the capacity to add in additional assessments to understand your child's unique profile of strengths and differences in more depth. This includes:
- A motor and sensory assessment from an occupational therapist who specialises in ASD
- A cognitive assessment (WISC-V) to understand a little more about your child's profile of strengths and abilities (2 hours long)
4. We believe that a diagnostic assessment should not just be about giving a 'yes no' answer. Rather, we want to provide a full assessment of strengths, abilities and difficulties, and give you a host of recommendations and resources to help you to manage as a family. You will receive a full report of the diagnostic assessment.
The cost of the diagnostic assessment ranges from £1600 and we can build in additional assessments as needed so that you have a comprehensive understanding of your child‘s needs.
For further information or to enquire about a diagnostic assessment for your child, please do get in touch.
The Flat at Balimore, Basingstoke Road, Spencers Wood, RG7 1AA