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Autism Involvement Group (AIG) April 2023

Strategic and Commissioning updates from Devon County Council (DCC), NHS Devon and the ‘One Devon’ Integrated Care Board for the overall health and social care system, covering geographical Devon.  

A member from DCC came to talk to the group about an update on the Adult Social Care and Vision strategies and spoke about the impact the group had on the document when last introduced in December 2022. Discussion included topics such as the style and structure of the document, changes made to the service the strategies propose and the language and principles used in the promoting independence. The presenter also did a summary of the next steps in the process and also the estimated time line it will take to complete the project.

Operational Update from DAANA (Devon Partnership Trust/Health)

A training project is in the process of producing an video-based Autism training that is being offered to services within The Trust, the video will be able to be customized and tailored to the services being provided; a survey was sent out to people asking what is important to be included in the training and what they feel is important for professionals to know about Autism. A similar project being done by the company “Silver Cloud” will be an online program for people who have recently been diagnosed.

Operational Update from Autism and ADHD team (Devon County Council/Social Care)  

Waiting list is for Autism and ADHD team is currently at 117 people; Preparing for Adulthood waiting list is 123 people. Requirement is in the process to support staffing in the team. Peer learning is taking place within in the Devon Adult Autism Intervention Team (DAAIT). Discussion on how to refer a person as a case on an individual who’s reasonable adjustments were being refused when leaving the hospital ; it was suggested that if any complaints need to be made to Patient Advice and Liaison Service (PALS) team.

All Ages Autism Pre-assessment

An presentation was shown the AIG members which covered topics including:

  • An increasing trend in diagnosis of Autism in adults. 
  • Demand for autism assessment superseding capacity è long waiting lists and waiting times. 
  • Drive to reduce waiting times for assessment. 
  • May 2020 DAANA Survey​ 
  • Pre-assessment support​ 
  • 2023 Survey questions: Lived experience 
  • 2023 survey questions: Professionals 
  • National Guidance Framework 
  • Examples of Pre – Autism Assessment Support 
Devon County Council Adult Social Care new draft web site  

A member for DCC joined the AIG to discuss their actions from a previous AIG that was held in December 2022 where they wanted comments and suggestions on how they can update the DCC Adult Social Care website and make it more accessible for the audience it is intended for. The webpage is not live yet as the team is still updating and editing the content; members were able to offer more suggestions on details such as language used, format of text was on for example, using grids instead of bubble in the columns. Appreciation was given on the Autism page and the modern approach given to neurodiversity.

Preparing for Adulthood (PFA)

A presentation was shown to AIG members outlining key areas of discussion included the need for change, transitions in to Adult Social Care and exploring new ways of working. The presentation was shown as this is a year long piece of work and would appreciate any comments from the members to be shared after the meeting. The presenter expressed their desire to come back and speak with the members in the future about the current status of the project.

Dimensions for Autism (DFA):

Information was shared with AIG members about the group activities prior to meeting. DFA will be attending the RESPECT festival that will be happening 10-11th June. Another 1000 Autism Alert Cards to be handed out to the community. A new Barnstaple member from the Autism Woodland Project has agreed to share their woodland area to help improve people’s mental health in the Autistic community; DFA to arrange an outing in July which is free and children are welcomed. Discussion and warning around the national emergency alert that would be happening Sunday 23rd April to test the new alert system; this was to let members know about to prevent concern or panic during the alert.