CNNH Stories: Leo

“CNNH has transformed our lives. When Leo turned 15 months, we observed that he was suffering from some form of expressive delay. Leo easily became frustrated, and he would throw himself against the wall and couch seeking some type of deep pressure and sensory input. Leo qualified for Early Intervention, but it was not until Leo came under the care of the CNNH team did we feel that every aspect of his care came together regarding his diagnosis and educational plan. Everyone, from the girls that answered the phone, to the office manager, to his BCBA therapists, nurse practitioner and creative arts therapists, provided us with the direction, strength, support and encouragement to help us identify the right educational environment for Leo and to connect us with other specialists in the community. Every member of the CNNH team has been accessible, caring and compassionate. My son was not just another file number, they saw him as a young toddler with big, brown eyes and a bright smile. After just six months of being under CNNH’s care, Leo maintains strong eye contact. He is able to speak (a lot!), make his wants and needs known, toilet independently and greet others. Most importantly, Leo is able to follow directions and stand still. He is no longer that frustrated little boy who had the weight of the world on his shoulders. Leo is a bright, academically gifted toddler that will be able to transition into Kindergarten at a local Catholic school in a year.

No words can emotionally capture the gratitude we have for the CNNH team. Because of their dedication toward Leo’s success, anything is possible regarding our son’s future. When we asked Leo what he wants to be when he grows up he said, “I want to be a doctor or President of the United States!”

-Leo’s Mom

Expert Panel “Not Enough Evidence for Autism Screenings”

“And mandating autism screening will help clinicians intervene early”, said Dr. Mark Mintz, a pediatric neurologist who heads the Center for Neurological and Neurodevelopmental Health in New Jersey and Pennsylvania. “If this report causes primary care and other providers to stop specific autism screenings, the result is going to be that many infants and children will not be diagnosed between 0 and 3. They’ll miss that opportunity for early intervention,” Mintz said…

This article reprinted courtesy of NewsWorks

By Karen Shakeridge

Should clinicians screen every single child under 3 for autism? The U.S. Preventive Services Task Force has addressed that question in a recent statement and the answer has advocacy groups and clinicians speaking out.

The technically independent but government-backed panel concludes there’s not enough evidence to recommend for or against screening all children for autism spectrum disorder.

“We are concerned that people will then take this further and say well, if there’s no evidence that it’s helpful or that it’s scientifically valid or useful, why should we do it?” said Dr. Susan E. Levy, chairwoman of the American Academy of Pediatric subcommittee on autism.

And mandating autism screening will help clinicians intervene early, said Dr. Mark Mintz, a pediatric neurologist who heads the Center for Neurological and Neurodevelopmental Health in New Jersey.

“If this report causes primary care and other providers to stop specific autism screenings, the result is going to be that many infants and children will not be diagnosed between 0 and 3. They’ll miss that opportunity for early intervention,” Mintz said.

One in every 68 children has an autism spectrum disorder, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. And while many pediatricians already look for signs, screening without regulation screening can be spotty.

“The government is probably looking at this a little bit more from an ideal perspective, saying that pediatricians do developmental screenings anyway, why add to their burden of an extra mandatory test?

“And that would be correct if everybody was doing those basic developmental screens. But in the real world, it’s just not happening,” Mintz said.

The taskforce called for more research on universal screening and invites comments from the public until Aug. 31.