Families often contact us to enquire about an assessment for possible Autism Spectrum Condition. There can be a number of reasons for contacting Grow Communication:
- It may be that this is a new concern for a young child who may be showing differences in their social communication and language development. Families would like to better understand what their child is experiencing and how best to support them including which services they could be engaging with within NHS/Education
- Some families contact with longer standing concerns which may be of a more subtle or complex nature, making it more challenging for a clear diagnosis to be made through mainstream services.
We also offer a pre-assessment which allows families a holding place to set out their concerns, feel listened to in a non-judgemental supportive setting and for recommendations to be made regarding the most appropriate next steps.
This assessment is a single clinician assessment (unlike the full assessment) with a specialist speech and language therapist who is experienced in assessing and identifying a range of difficulties/conditions. Following the pre-assessment meeting we may conclude that a family may need to seek further assessment and support, for instance for ADHD, mental health, language skills, Autism Spectrum Condition, Sensory Processing etc.
The Assessment Process
|ENQUIRY STAGE||Initial Contacts (via email, telephone, message) to gather details and whether a referral is appropriate. Information sheets of potential assessment options send appropriate to the discussion GROW books assessment session GROW to issue a range of questionnaires for completion before the assessment session – to the family/ the young person if appropriate and also to any educational or work placements. GROW to issue invoice which must be paid in full before the assessment commences.|
|ASSESSMENT PREPARATION||PARENT/CARER – to return the screening questionnaires a week before the assessment session. GROW – to review documentation and questionnaires prior to the assessment.|
|ON ASSESSMENT DAY||Assessment takes between 2-3 hours. This is direct (but informal) assessment with the young person and their carer(s) in the clinic setting. We arrange this flexibly to suit the needs of the individual. This is a relaxed and gentle session in a lovely clinic space and the aim is to create a comfortable low-demand atmosphere to be able to explore with the young person and their family how they experience the world and the challenges that they face. For younger children this is a play-based process and Grow has a well-equipped clinic. Our sessions usually involve biscuits as well! This may involve seeing the young person alone, or together with their family – we are always guided by the wishes of the young person and what is comfortable for them. Some families arrange for their young person to be there for part of the session then arrange for them to return home while they continue their discussion with us. This can be helpful so that the more challenging aspects can be discussed openly. If attending the clinic is not feasible (for some young people attending a new place is not possible) then we can discuss conducting the assessment at home or in another place where that young person feels secure. (additional mileage/travel time costs would be applied).|
|FOLLOWING ASSESSMENT||Once the direct assessment is over the Speech and Language Therapist will formulate what they have assessed, write this up into a profile formulation report. Follow up contact may be made with other’s involved with the child/young person and additional questionnaires may be sent to gather extra information. This will then be collated into the report. This report is written from scratch for every individual and we do NOT use generic formats. We identify key support strategies and recommendations for moving forward.|
|FEEDBACK SESSION||A telephone feedback session is offered following receipt of report to discuss the recommendations and agree next steps|
|POST ASSESSMENT||Following the pre-assessment, Grow Communication is able to promptly offer input for the agreed next steps. We offer access to a multidisciplinary team with in-house Speech and Language Therapy, and associates Clinical Psychology, Educational Psychology, Occupational Therapy, Dietician and Physiotherapy.|
|Total Cost £350|