Worcester News Article – 17th April

27th March to 2nd April was World Autism Awareness Week. Autism Spectrum Conditions is one of the areas Healthwatch Worcestershire are currently focussing on, following feedback we have received from the public.

Healthwatch England marked World Autism Awareness Week by publishing a briefing about the key issues being experienced by children and young people on the autism spectrum and their parents and carers. They looked at work being carried out by local Healthwatch across the country, which included work that we have done, involving parents in giving feedback about the Umbrella diagnosis pathway in Worcestershire. This week we have provided further parent feedback we have gathered, about drafts of new information being created for parents about the pathway. As this was something parents had told us needed improving.

We attended an event organised by Fortis Housing on 5th April, aimed at providing information and raising awareness of local groups and services in Worcestershire. We also attended Worcestershire’s Autism Strategic Partnership Board to discuss the work we will be doing and how this can feed into Worcestershire’s All Age Autism Strategy.

The next stage of our work will involve sending out a survey to health services across the county, including GP practices, to help identify the understanding amongst staff of autism spectrum conditions and identify good practice and adjustments.

We will be carrying out engagement over the next year with people with autism spectrum conditions and their carers. Please get in touch if you would like further information about our work and how to get involved. We are especially keen to make links with smaller voluntary support groups across the county. More information about the work we have done so far, please visit our website www.healthwatchworcestershire.co.uk

For more information about Healthwatch Worcestershire, or to share your experiences about health and social care services, please visit our website or contact us at info@healthwatchworcestershire.co.uk or phone 01386 550 264 .