Predicting ADHD trends in 2024: Transforming diagnosis & treatment
In the ever-evolving landscape of ADHD diagnosis and treatment, 2024 promises to continue to bring positive changes. Clinical Team Manager Jess Brunet spoke to our team of expert clinical advisors to predict six trends in ADHD care next year.
1. Hearing more of the patient voice
One of the biggest trends we expect to see continue is the growing volume of patient voices – especially on social media platforms. The last couple of years have seen social media amplify individual voices with ADHD and comorbid conditions, who are sharing their lived experiences.
This shift has not only fostered a sense of community and raised awareness but has also provided invaluable insights for healthcare providers. Through listening to those with lived experiences, healthcare providers can continue to improve ADHD care pathways and clinicians can adapt based on patient feedback, ensuring the diagnostic journey tells the story of that persons experience with ADHD symptoms in the context of the modern world. Through actively listening and exploring co-occurring needs it can lead to more accurate diagnoses and fulfilling experiences.
2. Digital technology is going to have increased utilization
In ADHD care, more clinicians are beginning to use technology to enhance patient care. In 2024, we predict a surge in these digital tools to support ADHD diagnosis and treatment. This includes telehealth which allows clinicians to serve more patients across wider regions. This is particularly useful in more rural or underserviced areas with fewer healthcare providers, or for those who are unable to travel for medical appointments.
It’s important that healthcare providers aren’t left behind and keep up with cutting-edge ways to diagnose and treat patients. Integrating new systems can modernize and streamline the diagnostic process, ensuring efficiency and accuracy which saves both time and money. It can also improve patient choice, having the option of either a face to face or a telehealth approach improves equitable access to healthcare especially for groups who may move around the country, for example, those in the military, looking after children, or those going to university.
3. More neuro-inclusive workplaces
Following decades of stigma around people with neurodiverse conditions, recent raised awareness is making the workplace an increasingly better place for neurodiverse individuals. Companies are recognizing the strengths and perspectives that neurodiverse employees can bring – including ADHD.
While there is still a long way to go, it’s encouraging to see that more workplaces are adapting to become better placed to support these employees and allow them to thrive. Find out more with our blog on ADHD in the workplace and organizations that are leading the way.
4. Improving access through primary care
It’s no secret that several countries are currently grappling with long wait times for ADHD assessments. Stakeholders need to look to improve patient access to care through innovative tools and effective communication across the care pathway. This will help to aid referrals in primary care – the ‘front door’ of the healthcare system and reduce the overall waiting period for a full diagnosis.
Across the UK we are seeing an increase in clinicians beginning to specialize in ADHD and neurodevelopmental conditions, improving access to assessment. Satellite clinics are also on the increase, seeing specialist nurses and other practitioners work out of local clinics or more accessible points within the community.
Learn more with our case study on assessing ADHD in primary care in the UK.
5. A needs-based model while waiting for a formal assessment
Empowering individuals while they wait for formal assessments is crucial. A needs-based model would involve helping in distribute knowledge about neurodevelopmental conditions to help raise awareness and foster understanding. If an individual has identified symptoms of ADHD and is awaiting a formal assessment, adapting the environment with individualized reasonable adjustments will be beneficial regardless of the diagnostic outcome.
By spreading information about ADHD, those who are in need of ADHD care are more likely to be able to access reasonable adjustments in their environments, creating a supportive environment in the meantime.
6. Ongoing government advocacy to continue improving ADHD care
The ongoing shortage of ADHD medication is having far-reaching consequences for patients and their families in countries across the world. In the UK, this is happening alongside limited services being able to offer pre and post diagnostic support due to little resources available. This can leave many feeling overwhelmed and unsure how to get support for their symptoms, making ongoing advocacy to improve ADHD care at government level incredibly important, something the ADHD Foundation is working to do.
In the US, a consensus statement has been created, through a group of key stakeholders who have come together to develop a vision for the future of ADHD care by reducing obstacles and standardizing the diagnostic process. This is a leading example of putting the lives of those affected by ADHD at the forefront of government thinking and we hope this consortium can inspire others to raise awareness and carve out a path of excellent and equitable care within their own communities.
We’re excited to see the continued commitment to innovation, patient-centricity, and advocacy, ensuring that clinicians have the tools and knowledge they need to deliver timely and tailored support patients deserve.
Get in contact with us to learn more about our objective ADHD tests