ADHD is a neurodiverse developmental condition that is diagnosed and treated by a specialist. GPs are unable to make a diagnosis or start ADHD medications. In view of extremely high national demand for Adult ADHD services it is our aim as a practice to help you understand your options if you would like to be referred to an ADHD specialist.
Leeds Adult ADHD Service (NHS service)
Please see their website for up-to-date referral information, waiting times and treatment options.
We understand the long wait can be frustrating and many of our patients opt to be referred via the Right To Choose (RTC) pathway.
What is the Right To Choose pathway?
The RTC pathway, gives patients the right to choose their service provider for mental health & physical health conditions.
More information about the right to choose pathway can be found on the NHS England website –
If the eligibility criteria are met, the NHS will fund your assessment and treatment. We recommend the following link for detailed RTC information regarding ADHD pathways:
Please note the pathway only applies to services in England who meet the above criteria, and the pathway does not apply to services that are part of NHS Wales, Scotland, or Northern Ireland.
How do I request a right to choose referral?
When setting up a referral via the NHS for ADHD assessment a GP appointment will be required to determine whether an assessment is clinically necessary, and the GP will ask you some questions about your symptoms.
If a referral for assessment is required, you can either notify the GP in the appointment that you wish to exercise your right to choose or inform the practice via email. You must state which provider you wish to be referred to, as well as complete any necessary forms that services may require for the assessment. These will be provided to you after the GP appointment once you have decided your choice of service.
Right To Choose approved services:
After a temporary pause, Psychiatry-UK reopened for referrals since 19 October 2023. They offer both assessments and medication pathways.
Clinical partners (assessment only, no medication pathway)
Oakdale Centre (assessment only, no medication pathway)
Shared Care Agreements –
A shared care agreement is between the ADHD specialist and the GP and enables the GP to prescribe ADHD medication to the patient
A shared care agreement can only be set up between a GP and the specialist after the following conditions are met.
- The patient must have received an ADHD diagnosis by a specialist and has been monitored by the specialist until stabilized on medication.
- The patient must continue to have annual reviews with the specialist.
- The Specialist may request physical monitoring to be carried out by the GP such as bloods tests and/or ECG. The frequency of this monitoring will be determined by the specialist and the GP will follow clinical guidelines.Monitoring, if required can be carried out by the practice. Some private services may offer their own monitoring.
- The relevant shared care agreement documentation must be received from the specialist and form part of your medical record.
There is some variation nationally between GP practices regarding shared care agreements. This may mean that any existing shared care arrangements from outside of Leeds would be at the discretion of LSMP to continue and subject to local prescribing guidelines. Similarly, a shared care agreement set up in Leeds, may not be accepted if you changed GP practice in the future.
Private Assessments –
Due to extremely high waiting times, many patients are now opting to have a private assessment for ADHD.
It is important to note that if you undergo a private assessment and the private specialist starts treatment, private services are likely to charge private prescription rates for any medication they prescribe and they often charge patients for medication review appointments, in addition.
If you would like your GP to take over NHS prescriptions, then the above conditions need to be met before a shared care agreement can be considered.
Patients who choose the private referral route, and then wish to switch to NHS treatment, will require a referral to an NHS funded ADHD service.
Before booking for a private assessment, it is important to be aware that some private providers will carry out ADHD assessments that are not recognised by the NHS. This means, should you wish to switch your ADHD care to the NHS. The NHS specialist may request that you undergo a new assessment, and you will be added to the waiting list for assessments.
International Students- Adderall
Some countries, such as the US may prescribe Adderall to treat ADHD. Unfortunately, Adderall cannot be prescribed by an NHS clinician in the UK. However, whilst in the UK, you may be able to access alternative ADHD medications, please read on to find out how.
Adderall may still be available on a private prescription from a private ADHD specialist.
To arrange ADHD medication after arriving in the UK, you will need to be referred to an NHS titration service, unless you intend to seek care privately. For the NHS referral, it is a good idea to get as much documentation as possible from your current doctor, but it is possible that you will have to complete some or all diagnostic testing again, even with a prior diagnosis.
It may take some time to access NHS ADHD treatment as the waiting lists for services are long and prescriptions from your overseas psychiatrist will not be valid to be fulfilled by a UK pharmacy.
Some patients may opt to seek private care or be referred via NHS Right To Choose. Please refer to the previous section for further information regarding referral pathways.
Further Information and useful Links:
URGENT UPDATE REGARDING NATIONAL ADHD MEDICATION SHORTAGE
We are experiencing current severe disruptions in the supply of ADHD medications nationally.
NHS England have recently issued a National Patient Safety Alert, which highlights supply disruptions.
Please click this link for more information including a full list of the medications affected.
Local advice regarding the ADHD medication shortage: