In recent days, you will no doubt have seen the reported scandal involving online ADHD diagnosis at three private clinics. Whilst this has nothing to do with our business, we feel it’s important to comment and help to shed light on the matter, for the sake of our patients and clinicians, and anyone else who may have been shocked by the initial angle of the report.

The clinics in question have been accused of over-diagnosing ADHD and prescribing medication without proper evaluation. At the Purple House Clinic, we are committed to providing assessments and therapies of the highest standards and we do not condone or seek to excuse any service providing inadequate care. However, concerns have been raised by a number of patient-led groups, such as The ADHD Foundation Neurodiversity Charity, about the impartiality of the programme, particularly given that they, and other NGOs were not included in the conversation and research. Their disappointment centred around this and four other major points.

  1. The programme fails to capture the historic inequality of access to health services and lack of priority given to patients with ADHD.
  2. The programme does not make effort to fully represent the private sector.
  3. The programme misrepresents the patient experience.
  4. The programme failed to highlight that NHS, like most private providers, offer medication only.

We believe this leaves people in a state of confusion and/or heighten concern around accessing these vital services. Now, more than ever, we must all seek to reassure and support parents and patients as they embark on, or progress through the, sometimes very difficult, process of ADHD evaluations.

At the Purple House Clinics, we are committed to providing thorough and ethical ADHD evaluations. We follow clinical guidelines set out by the National Institute for Health and Care Excellence (NICE).

We only diagnose ADHD after a thorough assessment which includes consideration of presenting issues, coexisting conditions, social, familial and education or occupational circumstances, physical health and development. We include the use of checklists and structured interviews but we do not rely on these alone to form a clinical opinion. This comprehensive approach is essential to ensure the highest quality of care is provided.

Clinics must be able to evidence systems, processes and policies that both support and continually improve patient experiences and outcomes. At The Purple House Clinic, we achieve this by:

  • Maintaining the highest standards in recruitment, adhering to centrally governed criteria of ‘approved clinicians’ and standardised recruitment procedures
  • Operating a comprehensive structure of clinical governance which includes (but is not limited to) clinical risk assessment, safeguarding, data protection, health and safety and safer recruitment. We operate a clinical governance board comprised of our clinical directors to help ensure standards are maintain and continually developed
  • Following standard protocols for neurodevelopmental assessments across our clinic network. These have been developed by clinical experts with reference to NICE guidelines
  • Following a strict internal prescribing policy which is informed by the General Medical Council’s own policy on prescribing. Our clinics which prescribe medication undergo registration with Health Improvement Scotland (Scotland) or by the Care Quality Commission (England)
  • Following a delivery model of having physical clinics; we are strictly not an online referral agency. This means that our team of clinicians work together and have regular dialogue about the work they are doing and are able to provide joined up working between different care pathways.

If you are concerned about ADHD, and seeking help, here are some tips for choosing a safe and ethical ADHD assessment:

  • Make sure the clinician is registered with the relevant governing body for their profession (for Psychiatrists this is the GMC and for Psychologists this is the HCPC)
  • Ask about the clinician’s experience and qualifications regarding ADHD assessments
  • Find out what assessment protocol the clinician or clinic uses and check if this matches NICE guidelines for ADHD assessment
  • Make sure the clinic will work with you to develop a treatment plan that is tailored to your individual needs.

If you have any concerns about ADHD diagnosis, please talk to your GP. They will be happy to answer any questions you have and discuss your options.

The full article detailing the concerns of the ADHD Foundation Neurodiversity Charity can be read here:

Watch Our Franchise Q&A Video

Enter your contact information below and you will be redirected to watch our Franchise Q&A video!

*We will never share your details with any third parties.