What will happen at my outpatient appointment?

Important things for you to know about your appointment are:

I will always ask you before you come into the appointment if you would like to be seen on your own for part or all of your appointment. Often young people choose to be seen on their own first and their parents join towards the end to fill in gaps about younger years which you might not know and to hear the treatment plans. It is up to you how we run the appointment though, we can do it how you feel comfortable; it is your appointment and if you want your parents seen first or to be seen with them all the time through the appointment, that is fine too.

If you are old enough to make your own decisions it is up to you how much information I share with your parents. I will explain this to you when we first meet in detail, but generally if you do not want information shared, I have to respect that confidentiality, unless I believe you or someone else is at serious risk, then I might have to tell someone to protect you but it might not be a parent. I always tell you if I have to share information with someone before I do it. At the end of the session I check with you who can have copies of your clinic letters.

The initial meeting we have takes up to an hour and a half, unless you are being assessed for attention deficit hyperactivity disorder, then the appointment can take up to 2 hours. Follow up sessions are usually 30 minutes but if you need longer please let your parents know that in advance so a longer appointment can be booked. I always want to ensure you have all your questions answered.

I do not take blood tests or physically examine you in my clinic. If anything like that is required I would get your permission to ask your GP to do this at a later date.

If your parents want to talk to me for some of the time on their own, I generally agree to this but I will not disclose information you have told me not to share during my time with them. If you need a break during the appointment or to move around, or you want to get your pet to show me online, that is all fine. I want you to feel relaxed and able to chat openly. If you have any questions about your appointment before it happens please do send your questions to admin@drvanzwanenberg.com and I will try my best to answer your query.

What others have said…

I did not want to go to the appointment at first but now I am so pleased I did. It was one of the best things I have ever done. I feel so much happier now I have had treatment and there was nothing intimidating about any of the appointments. Dr Hayley (Dr van Zwanenberg) is great, she really listens and she knows what she is talking about

Jonny, Age 17

When I first saw Dr Hayley, we told each other jokes, she had some quite good ones which I did not get at first but she explained. I played with some of her toys, the pin art was my favourite. She worked out I have autism and she told me all about it. My mum and dad now get why I like doing things on my own and why I am different sometimes from my brother and sister

Brad, Age 8

It was great to know that I could talk at last about how I was feeling with someone who really understood and did not get cross, or judge me

Bethany, Age 16

If you have any questions about your appointment please do e-mail me, I am happy to answer any queries and no questions are silly, if something is worrying you, it is important.