“Early intervention is pivotal for children who have Autism diagnoses,” said Dr. Karen Grattan-Miscio, Clinical Director of Autism Services at Hands. “By providing families access to a validated tool for screening, as well as appropriate resources and support through our Autism Resource Coordinator, we are better able to support families in obtaining the resources they need, at the right time.”
Hands’ new screening tool is phase one of the Modified Checklist for Autism in Toddlers. It supports families in identifying or addressing concerns they may have and provides an opportunity to make a connection to support services, but it does not provide a diagnosis. Support services may include: a more complete developmental assessment, referral support to appropriate services, training opportunities, etc.
Parents of young children who have concerns can access the autism screening tool by visiting Hands’ website at: www.thefamilyhelpnetwork.ca/autism-support.
Upon completion of the screener, parents may choose to provide their contact information and Hands’ Autism Resource Coordinator will be in touch. Alternatively, parents can call their local Hands office directly or toll free at 1-800-668-8555.
Autism Spectrum Disorder is a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior. Autism Spectrum Disorder can be further associated with intellectual disability, difficulties in motor coordination and attention, and physical health issues such as sleep and gastrointestinal disturbances.