Improving mental health services for adults with Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD)

A man and woman sitting opposite each other with coffee in front of them, chatting

The Bristol ADHD Service provides assessment, diagnosis and prescribing services for adults with ADHD. The service was established to meet the needs of a growing group of young adults who were leaving Child and Adult Mental Health Services with an ongoing need for ADHD treatment. It also provides a service to adults who would benefit from, but had not previously received treatment for ADHD.

However, following its establishment, the need for ongoing drug treatment and the lack of shared care led to an expanding caseload and very long wait times to access treatment.

We began a review of the service, aiming to reduce the long wait times and improve throughput.

What we did

In 2018, our Clinical Effectiveness & Research Team reviewed the evidence on general prevalence and diagnosis rates of ADHD in adults, as well as areas of good practice. This included reviewing the different types of service models adopted by other localities.

The evidence review identified a number of sustainable, cost-effective service models for adult ADHD services elsewhere in the UK, as well as discovering the chronic under-recognition and under-diagnosis of ADHD in adults in the UK.

Our impact

Working with colleagues from our local mental health provider we used the findings of the evidence review to develop a new service model. This is expected to radically transform the service and reduce wait times.

Read more impact case studies.