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Improving the NHS for people with autism and learning disabilities

20/08/2019

People with autism and learning disabilities say they need much more support and help to live full, healthy and productive lives, reveals a new report from Healthwatch.

lady smiling at meeting

Healthwatch asked people in Cambridgeshire and Peterborough, including those with autism and learning disabilities, how they would spend extra money on the NHS to improve services. 

And the findings in the What would you do? report published a few weeks ago, highlight problems ranging from getting a diagnosis, treatment and support to not enough appropriate services and problems accessing services that are there – particularly mental health.

People with autism and learning disabilities told Healthwatch they would like:

  • Care from familiar nurses and GPs
  • Services and care closer to home
  • Better communication
  • Easy-to-understand information using simple words and pictures        

One carer, in their late 60s, said: "There is no other help at all. Nothing proactive. Need to fight, remind, explain all the time. We three feel utterly abandoned now."

Another carer said her sons had amazing minds and if they had support to deal with anxiety and sensory difficulties they could "maybe live productive lives."

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Like to give your views or need information about local NHS services? Healthwatch, the independent champion for people using health and social care services, wants to hear from you.

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