MP holds meeting with health boss for local families affected by ASD

Geoffrey Cox Devon last week held a meeting for families living with those suffering from an Autistic Spectrum Disorder with Iain Tulley, Chief Executive of the Devon Partnership NHS Trust.

 

Geoffrey Cox, MP for Torridge & West Devon last week held a meeting for families living with those suffering from an Autistic Spectrum Disorder with Iain Tulley, Chief Executive of the Devon Partnership NHS Trust. The MP had asked Mr Tulley if he would attend the forum after discussions with constituents who had concerns about their children, and felt it would be useful to offer an opportunity for them to voice their concerns to not only their MP, but also the NHS Trust as providers of care.

Geoffrey Cox was particularly keen that the meeting was attended by parents of children with ASD, and those who work locally within the specific field, so that they could give accounts of their personal experiences and difficulties with the system, and make suggestions for improvement.

Parents were keen to give their personal accounts of both the positive help they had received from schools and the NHS, but many also expressed failings in the system and areas that needed improvement. A key concern for many parents was that they felt they were constantly battling to get across to schools, and services such as the Job Centre, and even some health professionals to understand exactly what autism is and how is affects each person differently.

Geoffrey Cox said "This meeting, which I hope will be the first of a series for local families, was intended to allow those in charge of provision for those with ASD better to understand and support both the parents of autistic children and adults, and indeed the sufferers themselves. Both Ian Tulley and I have come away from this meeting with a list of key areas that need improvement and I will continue to do whatever I can to ensure positive changes happen".

He continued "Autism cannot be treated with a 'one size fits all' attitude; it cannot be cured, it is something that has to be carefully managed, because without help many will go on to suffer mental health disorders. Therefore early detection, intervention and support is vital, and has to continue throughout a sufferer's life. Many ASD sufferers have extraordinary minds with very high IQ's, and have a great deal to offer; they need the right support".

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