Developmental Paediatrics

Developmental Paediatrics

Currently the Community Paediatrics, ASD and ADHD services are receiving an extremely high volume of calls. We understand the frustration this is causing to families trying to contact us and are working on a solution to remedy this.  If you need to contact the service please email We are aiming to respond to all emails within 2 working days of receipt.

developmental_paediatrics.jpgOur Department of Developmental Paediatrics consists of a team of doctors, nurses and specialist practitioners who see children with possible developmental difficulties to aid in their assessment and management. We also have a team of admin staff who aid in co-ordinating our assessments and communication with other professionals.

We work with many other professionals in assessing and managing developmental difficulties. The people we work with include therapists (speech, occupational and physiotherapy), educational psychology, educational professionals, child mental health service (CAMHs) and charities. This multi-team approach aims to support not only the children we see but also the families. 

What conditions do we deal with?

We assess and manage conditions like:

  • Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)
  • Autistic spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • Delay in development

We assess and manage children with complex neurodisability, working alongside other specialist doctors and teams, for conditions like:

  • Cerebral palsy
  • Genetic and chromosomal problems such as down syndrome 
  • Other conditions such as neurofibromatosis.

Often the children we see can have a complex mix of physical and developmental problems (including learning difficulties) and we are a part of a wider team involved in their care.

What conditions don’t we manage?

We don’t manage physical or mental health conditions such as:

  • Constipation, bedwetting, weight difficulties 
  • Depression, anxiety, self harm

If you are concerned about your child’s mental health you should talk to your GP, school nurse or health visitor who may suggest a referral to CAMHS. We do not medically manage behaviour problems or isolated sleep problems, and we do not assess for dyslexia, dyscalculia or sensory processing difficulties. However, the children we see can sometimes have these problems and may need assessment for these difficulties by relevant professionals.

What happens at the clinic appointment?

At an initial appointment we aim take a developmental history from the child’s parent or carer. This includes any problems during pregnancy, birth and the period soon after birth. We ask about current concerns, when these started and how they affect daily life. We also need to know about other health problems, medications, medical problems in the family and any other concerns. This often includes a social history.

We also examine the child for assessment of underlying medical problems that could be associated with their difficulties.

We may need further information from other people involved with your child, such as from school or nursery. We might request reports or send questionnaires for this extra information. We may ask to see the child in the nursery/school setting. 

Sometimes we may need to organise medical tests such as blood tests or scans. These are usually to look for a cause for the difficulties your child has presented with. We assess each case as to whether further tests are needed. 

SEN and Disability Local Offer

More information about the Local Offer for Children, young people and families can be found at


Please find below the link to our newly launched Developmental Paediatrics online referral platform. This will now be the quickest and most effective method of referral for Developmental Paediatrics, making the referring and tracking progress of referrals easier. Please also find guides below for using the online platform. If you are experiencing any significant problems with the online referral platform, please revert to using the paper referral form below as normal. 

The paper referral forms can still be used in the event of a system error on the online referral platform. If you are experiencing any significant errors please use the below link to access the paper form. This referral form can be submitted electronically by saving it into a PDF format and emailing it over to our Booking & Scheduling team Further guidance is attached to the form itself.

Download referral form

Repeat Prescription Form

To make a request for a repeat prescription, please fill out the repeat prescription form by clicking the below button.

Repeat Prescription Form

Alder Hey Sleep Service

Does your child have difficulty sleeping? Is it impacting on their behaviour or on family life? Do you need some support from a trained Sleep Practitioner?

Find out more about the Alder Hey Sleep Service

Contact us

The Developmental Paediatrics team is based on the Alder Hey campus but not in the main hospital building.

We are located in The Catkin Building, which is one of the older hospital buildings that you can access from our Eaton Road entrance (same entrance as A&E).

This is a different entrance to the new hospital entrance.

Our address

Department of Developmental Paediatrics
(ADHD/ASD/Community Paediatrics Team)
The Catkin Building, 1st Floor
Eaton Road
L12 2AP


  • 0151 282 4930 


  • 0151 282 4930


  • 0151 282 4930



  • 0151 282 4930



  • 0151 282 4930

STAT Team (Looked After Children/Adoption/EHCP)

  • 0151 252 5122
  • 0151 252 5814


  • Liverpool - 0151 293 3648
  • Sefton & Knowsley - 0151 252 5337


Please be aware many of the medications that we use are “controlled medications” legislated for under the misuse of drugs act 1971.

The medications we use should not be increased/stopped unless discussed with your prescribing clinician or one of the clinical team. They should not be used for other people. We do retain the right to refuse to prescribe medication if there is a reasonable concern that the medications are being used inappropriately.

We require two weeks notice to provide a repeat prescription due to the checks needed. We do not provide emergency prescriptions.

If you are unable to request medication using the online ‘Repeat Prescription Form’ please call 0151 282 4920 and select 'option 2'.

​Developmental delay

Children develop in the same way but at different rates. Sometimes children need to be assessed for possible underlying medical conditions if they have had delay gaining certain skills by a certain age for e.g. delay in walking by 18 months of age.

Some children are slow to develop skills in one area only such as gross motor (sitting, walking, and jumping) while others are slow to develop skills in more than one area such as gross motor and speech and language. This may indicate ‘global developmental delay’.

Our doctor will take a history from the parent/carer and examine their child. This will help to assess if any investigations are needed. Some children catch up in their development while others will need support. Some children may need investigation for medical conditions and the doctor may suggest blood tests (such as genetic testing) and sometimes brain scans. Occasionally, other tests such as hip X-rays may be needed.

Information for professionals: Referrals

  • If you wish to submit a referral regarding ADHD please click here.
  • If you wish to submit a referral regarding ASD, or any other developmental paediatric concerns, please click here.

If you have concerns related to ADHD and also another condition, you will need to submit two separate referrals. 

Part of the assessment is collecting information from professionals involved with your child. This means part of the referral form requests your consent to contact them prior to seeing your child in clinic.

To submit a referral, please send these forms to the below address:

Referrals, Alder Hey Children’s NHS Foundation Trust, Eaton Road, L12 2AP

Alternatively, you can email referrals to:

Attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD)

Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD)


Some children have conditions which affect the brain that they were either born with, occurred around the time of birth or develop over time. This might include children who develop cerebral palsy and other neurological difficulties. This can sometimes be related to being born early or having had difficulties prior to or during birth, or can even be related to problems that have happened in the first two years of life. Children with meningitis or encephalitis, hydrocephalus or other acquired brain injuries need help from our team. The team is currently developing pathways of care with a maternity hospital to provide early multidisciplinary intervention for children identified as being high risk in the perinatal period.

The initial assessment often needs a team approach to decide what the concerns are and which assessments and therapy or treatments are needed. The child has a holistic assessment and management plan to meet their medical, social and developmental needs. As children grow, their needs change; therefore children are followed up in clinic regularly.

We assess and manage these conditions alongside other professionals such as physiotherapy, occupational therapy, speech and language and other medical/surgical colleagues. We link in with education and we also link in with other services particularly neurology and orthopaedics, gastroenterology and respiratory medicine. This will help support children who have long term difficulties with spasticity and tone as well as those who have difficulties with feeding, constipation or with their chest. We also work closely with special schools and often see children within this setting with their network team.

The regional neurofibromatosis service provides comprehensive diagnostic evaluations, follow-up care and coordination of care for children with NF1. This service is closely linked to the complex National NF1 service based in Manchester.

Tuberous sclerosis (TS)
The regional multi-disciplinary tuberous sclerosis service brings together multiple specialties to provide neurological and neurodevelopment care for children with tuberous sclerosis.

Sensory impairment
The team works closely with the Ophthalmology team and specialist teachers of visual impairment to support children with vision impairment.

More information

Special educational needs

A number of the children we manage have medical conditions which can affect their ability to access mainstream education.

Each state school has a designated amount of money for children with special educational needs called "SEN support". This has replaced "school action" and "school action plus". Some children have access to extra funding through the "pupil premium" for instance if they are fostered.

Some children need extra support beyond this and school and/or family can apply for an Education Healthcare Plan (EHCP). This is a statutory document based on the local authority’s "local offer" and therefore may change if you move area. Please see the links for your area’s local offer.

We provide the medical information to the education panel. The decision regarding granting an EHCP is not dependant on having a diagnosis but rather on the needs of the child. An example of this is the diagnosis of autism spectrum disorder; children at the severe end of the spectrum may be unable to speak and need a lot of support whereas other children may function independently in mainstream school with much less support however they have the same diagnosis.

Schools will use funding in different ways depending on the needs of the child and also if the school already has an expertise in particular conditions. One-to-one support is not always required or offered.

More information

Local offers for:

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