18-25 Adult ADHD Team

Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, commonly known as ADHD, is a neurodevelopmental condition typically identified in childhood, but increasingly diagnosed into adulthood. Approximately 65% of childhood cases persist into adult life, impacting around 2-4% of individuals over the age of 18.

Symptoms include a lack of attention and concentration, distractibility, daydreaming, disorganisation, restlessness, physical and mental overactivity, impulsivity, and emotional instability. This can lead to significant psychological and behavioural impairments and issues with relationships with family, friends, and colleagues. ADHD is a hereditary condition, and many parents of children with ADHD receive their own diagnosis themselves for the first time in adulthood

How is ADHD treated in adults?

First-line treatment for ADHD in adults is medication, with stimulants (such as methylphenidate and dexamphetamine preparations) being the recommended options. Alternative treatments, such as atomoxetine, are considered second-line or used when stimulants are deemed unsuitable. There is insufficient evidence to support the effectiveness of psychological treatments alone for managing ADHD symptoms in adults. While these interventions may be beneficial when combined with medication, they are not readily available through the NHS at this time.

What services does the FTB Adult ADHD service offer?

We are open to residents of Birmingham and provide an assessment and treatment service for ADHD for those between the ages of 16 and 25, and a treatment service for those aged 18 to 25 who have an existing diagnosis of ADHD.

How do I get referred to the FTB Adult ADHD Service?

Referrals are accepted only from GPs, mental health services, and community paediatricians. Self-referrals are not accepted.

What is the assessment process like?

New assessments

Once your referral is received you will receive questionnaires which need to be completed and returned within 28 days from the date the letter is sent.  Please return them electronically to bwc.ftbadhdquestionnaires@nhs.net as this gives us the best chance of receiving them safely. If we do not receive the complete questionnaires within 28 days your referral will not be processed, and you will be discharged from our service.

Once we have received all the completed questionnaires you will be placed on our assessment waiting list. The assessment process is several stages:

  • Nurse Assessment (usually over the phone – this consists of two appointments of approximately an hour each)
  • Qb test – following the initial assessment you may be asked to complete a computerised assessment which will be conducted in person at our Finch Road hub.
  • Diagnostic appointment (usually in person at your local FTB hub). Progression to a diagnostic appointment is dependent on meeting specific criteria.

You will be fully informed of any decisions made relating to your assessment in a timely manner.

Assessment for those with an existing diagnosis of ADHD

Diagnosed and currently on treatment (from CAMHS, community paediatrics or other ADHD services)

Once your referral has been received and processed you will be placed on our diagnosed waiting list.

Please note that until you have been seen by us your care and treatment, including your prescriptions, will need to be provided by your current team.

Diagnosed and not currently on treatment

Once your referral has been received and processed you will be placed on our diagnosed waiting list.

If you've already received a diagnosis from a private provider, further assessments may be necessary to ensure it meets our minimum standards before proceeding with treatment.

What treatment options are available through the service?

 Currently, the service only provides medication as the primary treatment. Efforts are underway to expand resources to offer non-medical interventions in the future.

How long are the waiting times?

We recognise and appreciate that people requiring ADHD services have lengthy waiting times. Addressing this issue is a priority for us.

Demand for ADHD services nationwide has risen in recent years, and currently, the demand is far exceeding our capacity as a service.

Current waiting times are approximately:


  • From referral to diagnosis — 2 years 4 months
    • Referral to initial assessment — 1 year
    • Initial assessment to diagnostic appointment — 1 year 4 months


  • From referral to assessment for those with an existing diagnosis — 1 year 5 months


Please note that these times are subject to change, and we will update our website regularly to keep you informed.

Whilst we appreciate and acknowledge how difficult it is to wait, we kindly request that you please refrain from contacting the service for updates as this impacts our ability to operate effectively.

It is important to keep us updated with your contact details, as missing appointments may result in discharge from our service.

* data accurate as of July 2024

What happens when transitioning out of the service?

If you move out of the area your care will need to be transferred to your local ADHD team, typically through a referral from your GP. We will be able to provide any supporting documentation if required. Where possible we will ask your new GP to prescribe your ADHD medication via a shared care agreement to ensure as smooth a transition as possible whilst awaiting transfer.

If you are a Birmingham resident approaching the age of 25, you will transition to the over 25s ADHD team at Birmingham and Solihull Mental Health Foundation Trust. It is important that you attend your appointment with them when offered as nonattendance will risk you being discharged from both services and your ADHD treatment being discontinued.

Please ensure to keep us updated on your contact details to maintain continuity of care.