Autistic Spectrum Disorder - medium secure

A specialist medium secure admission, stabilisation and treatment service for men with autism, a forensic history and challenging behaviour.

Based in Nottingham, Wollaton is part of the largest secure Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD) pathway in the country and is situated on a site which only caters for men with ASD or Learning Disability. As a result, all staff in our ‘autism friendly’ environment understands the patients’ style of communication and behaviour and can therefore better meet their needs.

By providing a holistic and person-centred multi-disciplinary approach we’re able to balance security with care, enabling patients to develop and maintain skills in order to step down to a lower level of security and even the community.

Modern bright and spacious living and dining areas

On site gym

On site cafe

Patients library

Music room and instruments

On site sports hall

Outside courtyard spaces

Admissions criteria

Wollaton can accept male patients aged between 18 and 60 years, with a primary ASD diagnosis;

  • for assessment pending diagnosis; an intellectual disability and co-morbid mental illness


  • significant challenging behaviours which are not manageable in lower levels of security


  • a forensic history/index offence that require a medium secure environment.

Stabilisation and assessment

We recognise that each patient with ASD is unique and will have a very individual set of needs. We believe in working with our patients to develop an in-depth understanding of why they engaged in their offending behaviour and support them to improve their quality of life and reduce their risk by addressing: We address:

ASD Needs
- social interaction
- communication
- sensory differences   

Health and wellbeing needs   
- mental health
- physical health
- nutrition
- activity and exercise

Vocational needs
- Education
- Vocation
- Occupation 
- Life-skills
- Volunteering
- Employment

During Rehabilitation and recovery we utilise risk reducing therapeutic activities and interventions to develop new skills and address offending behaviour. These may include:

- Offending behaviour therapies e.g. arson setting, sexual offending.
- Cognitive-behavioural therapy 
- Substance misuse
- Anxiety Management
- Occupational therapy
- Speech and language therapy. 

A specialist team
As a specialist service, the extensive in-house multidisciplinary team (MDT) has received training specifically in supporting individuals with autism.

Rehabilitation and recovery

During this stage we aim to prevent relapse and promote resilience and recovery, while supporting transition to a lower level of security.

The aim is to empower the individual service user with skills and techniques to minimise challenging and risky behaviour and promote the use of positive coping strategies and techniques:

- Offending behaviour therapies (e.g. arson/fire setting, sexual offending, internet related offending)
- Cognitive-behavioural therapy
- Anger management
- Substance misuse
- Anxiety management
- Occupational therapy
- Speech and language therapy.

Discharge plans

Discharge is integral to the CPA approach and is considered at the point of admission. Our clinical and social work teams work with appropriate case managers to support a transition to a lower level of security.

Should the patient require further care in a low secure setting, we’re also able to offer step-down services in Newstead and Rufford.

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