Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD) is a behavioural disorder that includes symptoms such as inattentiveness, hyperactivity and impulsiveness and affects around 5% of school-aged children worldwide. ADHD can have a large impact on personal, academic, family and social interaction. In the UK children can wait on average 18 months from their first appointment to receiving a formal ADHD diagnosis and the annual cost of ADHD assessments to the NHS is estimated at around £23m.
The Focus ADHD intervention uses technology created by health technology company Qbtech Ltd. The technology, QbTest, measures a patient’s attention, impulsivity and motor activity all at the same time. These indicators are core symptoms of ADHD and accurate measurement adds objectivity to support timely diagnosis.
The intervention has shown a reduction in time to diagnosis by 153 days (median). Using this intervention increases staff capacity by reducing the number of appointments needed for diagnosis and by ruling out ADHD sooner for ambiguous cases. Releasing capacity of clinicians can help reduce waiting lists and allow clinicians more time to concentrate on complex cases.
Feedback from clinicians using the intervention have been extremely positive –
“Since we’ve had QbTest, I can often draw a diagnostic conclusion on the first appointment. You can actually do the job that you’re here to do and that gives you job satisfaction.” Consultant Community Paediatrician
In June 2020, QbTest was being used in 41 NHS trusts and 73 clinics in England, benefitting more than 33,000 people since January 2017. It will continue to spread across the country as the AHSN Network supports its wider spread during 2020-2022.
Blog: NHS Reset – an opportunity to improve ADHD assessment pathways by Dara Coppel, Head of Innovation Delivery, East Midlands AHSN
Click here for more information about the AHSN network National ADHD Programme