Autistic Spectrum Disorder - medium secure

 

As part of the largest, specialist secure Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) service in the country, Mackaness provides medium secure care for men aged between 18 and 65 with a primary diagnosis of Asperger’s Syndrome or suspected ASD. 

Supported by a comprehensive and experienced ASD team, we’re able to manage a range of complex co-morbid conditions, including mental illness, emotional and challenging behaviour.

Admissions criteria

Mackaness caters for men aged 18 years and over with Asperger’s Syndrome or a suspected ASD diagnosis;

  • they may have co-morbid mental illness problems and emotional, challenging or offending behaviour 
  • due to their level of risk, patients would meet the criteria for detention under the Mental Health Act [these criteria are a guide for assessing suitability 
  • each patient will be individually assessed by our dedicated team.

A personalised approach

Our ASD pathway adopts a biopsychosocial treatment approach, using a blend of well-established tools and assessment methods with in-house developed specialisms to assess each patient individually. These assessments explore the complexity of co-morbid conditions and pay attention to environmental, sensory and communication issues. This approach ensures the subsequent care and treatment programmes have the maximum amount of personalisation.

Our goal is to deliver meaningful outcomes, and provide care in the least restrictive environment, with the ultimate aim of supporting a patient to make a lasting community transition.

Our Autistic Spectrum Disorder pathway is underpinned by the SPELL (Structure, Positive, Empathy, Low Arousal, Links) framework.

We utilise a range of dedicated, evidence based diagnostic ASD tools, recommended in the NICE guidelines, to produce a multi-disciplinary formulation of needs.

A range of communication and psychiatric assessments take place, for example: 

  • cognitive functioning
  • social communications
  • sensory issues
  • behavioural assessments.

During this initial stage of treatment, we assess distressing symptoms, stabilise risk behaviours, reduce anxiety and promote engagement with therapy. 
We address patient needs, and improve quality of life, by ensuring we provide a holistic approach to ASD, mental and physical health and vocational needs.

Our person-centred programmes are focussed on reducing risk and addressing offending behaviour, whilst supporting the development of new skills. Therapeutic activities and interventions include: 

  • offending behaviour therapies (e.g. arson/fire setting, sexual offending, internet related offending)
  • cognitive behaviour therapy
  • dialectical behaviour therapy
  • speech and language therapy
  • anxiety management.

We promote resilience and recovery, whilst preventing relapse, with the ultimate aim of supporting a transition to a lower level of security and, where appropriate, community living.

Discharge planning

Discharge is always considered at the point of admission.

We utilise well established outcome measures to track a patient’s progress against their care programme. At the point of planned discharge, patients will have gained a range of skills in order to make a successful step-down to a less secure service or transition back to the community. 

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