8 Sep 2009

NORTHERN Ireland Commissioner for Children and Young People, Patricia Lewsley, today expressed concern that Belfast Health and Social Care Trust is not funding a charity for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder.

The Commissioner said that she has already written to the Chief Executive of the trust on their alleged failure to fund the NI-ADD, which provides more than 200 service sessions from Belfast trust referrals each year.

“It is ridiculous for a trust to refer children to a charity, but then refuse to fund that service,” said Ms Lewsley.

“I have met with NI-ADD several times, and more importantly have seen the tremendous work they do to help children and young people.

“Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder can have a devastating effect on families, but early intervention by the likes of NI-ADD can alleviate that, and enable the young person to cope with, for example, school.”

The Commissioner, in her letter to the trust chief executive, asked where young people and their families would find help if NI-ADD was forced to stop providing sessions.

“A relatively small investment in these services has the potential to save thousands of pounds in future referrals to the health service and disruptions in school.

“It’s important that this vital service is not lost especially to those children and young people who need it the most.”