Since 2014 Oldham’s Autism Way Forward Partnership Board has been developing an autism strategy for Oldham. Partners involved in developing the strategy have included partner and provider organisations, individuals with autism and their family members, as well as professionals from education, health and social care.
The strategy is a joint strategy between Oldham Council and NHS Oldham Clinical Commissioning Group.
It is an all age strategy and as such is for children, young people, adults and older adults with autism in Oldham. The aim of the strategy is to improve both the design and delivery of services and support by working better together to ensure improved outcomes for people and achieve better value for money that is spent on commissioned services.
We have four ambitions for children, young people and adults in Oldham; for people to:
- receive seamless support with all agencies working together commissioning effective services
- have a clear diagnosis pathway
- get the right support at the right time during their lifetime
- have better information and awareness of autism
A key objective of the strategy is to increase awareness and understanding of autism across the borough, including services, organisations and the general public; with the ambition for Oldham to be acknowledged as an Autism Friendly Town.
In 2016 the strategy went out on public consultation and was formally approved for publishing by Oldham Council’s Cabinet in December 2016.
Autism Way Forward
Oldham’s Autism Partnership Board is called Autism Way Forward and meets once every two months, at least six times a year. After each Partnership Board meeting minutes are produced. The minutes explain the subjects we talk about, include members comments and questions and any actions we agree to.
A major role for the Autism Way Forward board is to develop and steer the Autism Strategy in Oldham. Autism Way Forward reports to Oldham’s Health and Wellbeing Board and links many of Oldham’s key strategic meetings including the Learning Disability Partnership Board, the Special Educational Needs and Disabilities (SEND) Board, the Mental Health Strategy Partnership Board and the Safeguarding Children and Adults Boards.