"My son getting the help he needs"

About: Derbyshire Healthcare NHS Foundation Trust / Child and adolescent mental health King's Mill Hospital / Paediatric surgery

(as a parent/guardian),

My son has struggled his whole life with his anger and emotions. I knew something wasn't right, but nothing seemed to fit. As he got older he struggled at school, and by the time he went to secondary his behavior was off the scale.

He ended up with 18 exclusions. Nobody wanted to help, CAMHS kept refusing his referral, school seemed to think he was in control of his behavior and we didn't know what to do.

The school nurse, Karen Middleton, picked up on the amount of exclusions and got in touch with me. We had a long meeting where she actually listened and wanted to help. That in itself made all the difference. Karen spoke with Jamie, liaised with his school, rang our GP and the Peadiatrition to get us the help we needed.

Finally we were getting taken more seriously. Nine months later Jamie got an ASD diagnosis. Even though Jamie's behavior carried on and he got a permanent exclusion, with Karens help we began to understand our son. We are currently awaiting the completion of an EHC Plan for Jamie to get him the support he needs. People need to realise school nurses do so much more than they think. If it wasn't for Karens intervention I dread to think where we would be. I was sad when I heard Karen was leaving, but I am glad her replacement, Lucy Spencer, seems just as passionate!

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