Highlands & Islands

Inverness demo backs calls for quicker autism diagnosis

Demonstration outside Raigmore Hospital
Image caption Parents held a demonstration outside Raigmore Hospital in Inverness

Parents in the Highlands have called for shorter waiting times for the diagnosis of autism in children.

A demonstration backing the call was held outside NHS Highland's Raigmore Hospital in Inverness on Friday.

The health board said it was aware of parental concerns over the provision of services for children and young people with autism.

It added that arrangements were being made for a meeting between parents and NHS Highland's chief executive.

The health board said: "Discussions have taken place over the last few months around how to increase capacity in autism assessments.

"Children and parents do have to wait a long time if they are in need of specialist assessment and are understandably frustrated and angry about this."

NHS Highland said it was looking at ways in which services could work together to deliver a better assessment service for autism.

A spokesman added: "We also plan to increase our psychology capacity in our child and adolescent mental health service for children with autism spectrum disorders.

"NHS Highland chief executive Elaine Mead has arranged to meet with the organisers of today's demonstration to discuss their concerns."

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