A Powys mum has said she will have to take her two sons on a 220 mile round trip to get a diagnosis.

Hannah Medland said she will have to take her two sons Jack, four, and Lucas, 11, to a facility in Huddersfield to get them assessed for autism and ADHD respectively as it is quicker than waiting for an appointment in Powys.

The Welshpool family will be travelling 110 miles to Huddersfield to get the assessment due to the very long waits for children with additional learning needs to get assessed for help.

“It takes so long to get an assessment now,” said Hannah. “You have to wait months for the paperwork, you then have to wait months for any sort of assessment or appointment and then you have to wait months for a decision.”

County Times:

Hannah has registered at a GP over the border to take advantage of England's right to choose system, which sped up a process which threatened to last nine years in Powys.

“We’re on two pathways just to get them assessed as soon as possible. Not being assessed and not being diagnosed does not help the matter,” said Hannah.

“Schools want a diagnosis. This is just a yes or no question but they take ages.

“I got the forms within two weeks, they sent the form to the school and I am now looking at an assessment sometime from April to May.”


Hannah said the urgency for an assessment pushed her to take such drastic action as both boys frequently “mask” their symptoms at school setting with the difficulties only arising when they get home.

“The school will turn around and say everything is okay but he is masking so they are not going to see that, it’s the same with ADHD,” said Hannah. “At home we get most of the issues both of them are like that.

“Jack is doing okay at the moment but that is only because he is doing it through play whereas Lucas – he is struggling and he is going up to high school next year it is a massive difference.

“The first day of the school year when Jack got into reception he came out to his dad and he started crying. When we got to the school gate he had a massive meltdown and refused to move. I was in the car park for 45 minutes with him having a meltdown, that was scary.

“They are so hell bent on it being how you are parenting – have you tried this or this? And we have tried everything.”

County Times:

Hannah says she and the family are frustrated that they have had to take such action and will go further if they are again blocked from getting help.

“If they don’t listen after this I will have to go to tribunal,” said Hannah. “I’ve got to take them to Huddersfield to have their assessments, I can take them both at the same time.

“With the right to choose options there is less choice of where you can get things done. But it is a lot quicker.

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“This is mad but it is the same for adults. It’s hitting your head against a brick wall – you need to fight every single step of the way to get the help that you need."

A spokesperson for Powys Teaching Health Board said: “We take our responsibilities for patient confidentiality very seriously and it would not be appropriate for us to comment on individual care and treatment.

“We always aim to provide the very best care and treatment. However, if you are not satisfied with the care that you or your child have received then our concerns and patient experience team is here to help. Information about the team and the support they provide is available from pthb.nhs.wales/feedback or by calling 01874 712582.

“Work is currently under way by partner agencies in Powys to implement the new additional learning needs system for Wales which aims to transform the outcomes and experience of children and young people aged 0-25 who have additional learning needs, and their families."