The Autism Diagnosis Research Centre (ADRC) was set up in September 2007 as a spin-out, not-for-profit company from the University of Southampton. It still maintains close links with the School of Psychology, and the Clinical Psychology Training Programme at the University.
In May 2008 ADRC moved into Unity 12 in Rose Road, Southampton. The facilities include a large assessment/meeting room and a smaller consulting room to enable assessments to take place in comfort, and with due regard to the specific needs of the people we see. The building, the other organisations and, most importantly the whole ethos of Unity 12 fits perfectly with that of ADRC.
In July 2011 ADRC became a not-for-profit charity.
ADRC’s main focus was, and still is, on the assessment and diagnosis of autism. It is also involved in other services including autism awareness training, post-diagnostic intervention, and training and consultation.
An important part of this is to develop tools and methodology that will improve assessment, diagnosis, and intervention strategies for people with autism. It is towards this end that ADRC is involved in some aspects of research.
The video below gives an overview of facilities at ADRC, and its base, Unity 12.
Read the transcript of the video
"ADRC is based within Unity 12 - a purpose-built centre for organisations supporting disabled people. The center is easy to access via public transport, and offers a highly accessible environment, with induction loops fitted throughout, as well as lift access between floors. In addition, ADRC's consulting rooms are designed to accommodate sensory issues, a common feature of autism spectrum conditions, and these can be adjusted, for a range of sensitivities."
Pat Abbott, ADRC
To begin with, ADRC’s main focus was on the assessment and diagnosis of adults suspected of having autism. In January 2012 ADRC was awarded the contract to provide an autism assessment and diagnostic service for children, young people and adults on the Isle of Wight.
In response to the need for more ongoing work with adults with autism ADRC also offers a variety of other services including autism awareness training, post-diagnostic intervention, and training and consultation for healthcare professionals, social care staff and employers.
Following an assessment at ADRC each individual is given a comprehensive report. This ADRC Report is aimed at improving the quality of life and the productivity of each person assessed for the whole of their lives, thereby helping him or her to live a more engaged, safe, and fulfilling life. With this in mind, it is written in such a way as to be easily interpreted by the individual, the referrer, and other agencies from which support, help and / or advice may be sought. The assessment aims to identify each individual’s unique profile of strengths, and suggest ways in which these might be used to compensate for his or her deficits.
There are economic benefits too. The cost of inappropriate prescription of powerful drugs, of placement in a secure unit, of recurrent mental health problems, and of ‘hidden’ costs to family members can be immense. With ever-increasing demands on healthcare budgets and the pressure on PCTs to provide services, proper and timely access to assessment and diagnosis can facilitate appropriate treatment and support for individuals and their families, and can therefore be very cost-effective.
The Autism Diagnostic Research Centre (ADRC), is a not-for-profit company and registered charity. It provides an interdisciplinary diagnostic and assessment service for children, young people and adults suspected of having autism spectrum disorder. The ADRC has close links with the Doctorate in Clinical Psychology Training Programme at the University of Southampton.
The aim of the ADRC is not only to provide a diagnostic service for children, young people and adults with autism spectrum disorder, but to produce a report for that individual that will help him or her understand their condition better. A key element of this is the report that aims to identify the individual’s strengths and how these might be utilised to compensate for their deficits. The report also gives clear and concise guidance in terms of recommendations for support. This is aimed at improving the quality of life and the productivity of the individual with autism spectrum disorder for the whole of their lives, thereby helping him or her to live more engaged, safe, and fulfilling lives.