Memorandum by Elizabeth Murphy (AL 33)
I am a professional children's counsellor working,
with children and young people of all ages. I often see children
who have behaviour difficulties and in my professional opinion
may well benefit further from being referred to an allergy specialist;
but there is no NHS allergy clinic or service in the area and
many of the clients I see are unable to pay for private or alternative
1. In February 2004 I was employed to work
one day a week in a local junior school in a deprived area to
work with four referred children.
2. In march 2004 it became clear to me that
all the referred school children may well be suffering from ADHD/PTSS
and may well benefit further by having food allergy tests.
3. Children suffering from food allergies
often display behaviour symptoms similar to ADHD/PTSS and get
wrongly diagnosed and thus carry a label, which often continues
throughout their lives. Or indeed if they are found to have ADHD/PTSS
these children are often found to also suffer from food allergies
and can be further helped by receiving treatment from a food allergy
4. I am unable to refer any of these children
on for treatment as they and their families are unable to pay
for the treatment and there is no NHS allergy service in the area.
5. I am therefore unable to give a full
opinion on the cause of these children's symptoms and the children
are denied the possibility of a treatment that many well benefit
them further, or at least speed up the counselling process.
1. I would like to see the establishment
of more NHS allergy clinics also specialist NHS children's allergy
clinics, run by staff that are fully trained in all aspects of
2. Far better training regarding allergies
for GPs, doctors, consultants, nurses, practice nurses, school
nurses, midwifes, health visitors, psychologists, counsellors