Wondering about ADHD, autism and your child’s development? What to know about getting a neurodevelopmental assessment

By bobb |

Adam Guastella, University of Sydney; Kelsie Boulton, University of Sydney, and Natalie Silove, University of Sydney

With childcare and schools starting the new year, parents might be anxiously wondering how their child will adapt in a new learning environment. Some parents may be concerned about their child’s development or that they need specialised support.

One in five children have a developmental vulnerability when they start school. And one in ten will meet criteria for a neurodevelopmental condition, such as autism or attention deficit hyperactivity disorder (ADHD).

Average wait time for autism assessments in children is over 3 years

By bobb |

New research has revealed that children wait 3.5 years on average for neurodevelopment assessments.

The largest study of needs of families requesting neurodevelopment assessments found that the average time for families waiting on a completed assessment for their children was 3.5 years in public services. This wait time started from when parents first noticed a concern to when they received a comprehensive assessment.

A rich new lens

By bobb |

Jessica Horner

Being diagnosed as autistic as an adult made these people want to make a change. Now they’re flipping the switch on the negative perceptions of autism.

ABC Riverina

“I am a broken person, trying to put the pieces back together in the (perhaps vain) hope that maybe the repaired version will be more beautiful than the scars that pain left behind …”

'It's absolutely disgraceful': Perth boy faces two-year wait for autism assessment

By bobb |

A Perth mother says she has been pushed to the edge of despair after being told she will have to wait at least two years to get an autism assessment for her 10-year-old son.

"When I got the letter telling me about the wait time I just burst into tears," Tanya Wheat said.

"It is absolutely disgraceful, we can't wait two years, my son needs support now."

Autism research at the crossroads

By bobb |

Brady Huggett

In April of 2021, Emilie Wigdor finished up a paper titled “The female protective effect against autism spectrum disorder” and put it on the pre-print server medRxiv. Wigdor is a Ph.D. student in human genetics at the University of Cambridge and the Wellcome Sanger Institute in the United Kingdom, and the paper had taken three years to complete. It was also the first paper on which she was first author. She was proud of that, and she took to Twitter to promote the work in an 11-part thread.