What should parents do if they suspect their child has an autism spectrum disorder?

    Published: 06-16-2009
    Views: 14,216
    Autism expert Peggy Halliday discusses what parents should do if they suspect their child has an autism spectrum disorder.

    Peggy Halliday

    Peggy Halliday is a board certified associate behavior analyst who has specialized in autism education for the past ten years. She is the Director of Outreach Services at the Virginia Institute of Autism (VIA) in Charlottesville, VA. VIA is a non-profit organization which provides a day school and other resources for families, educators, and other professionals seeking services, training or information about autism and evidence-based interventions. The Institute operates a year-round school for students ages 2-22, a 700-volume library, training workshops, internships for undergraduate and graduate students and teachers, and customized trainings for schools. Peggy supervises a wide range of outreach services, including development and supervision of comprehensive, home-based early intervention programs incorporating naturalistic, incidental, and structured teaching using the principles of applied behavior analysis; training for parents and home instructors; skills assessments, functional behavior assessments and intervention plans, and consultation on Individual Education Plan goals. She has presented trainings and workshops at state and national conferences.

    Host: What should parents do if they suspect their child has an autism spectrum disorder? Peggy Halliday: If you suspect, your child may have an autism spectrum disorder, I would encourage you to seek help right away. The earlier that you receive a diagnosis of autism for your child, the better, the outcomes are going to be because you can start early intervention, and there is a direct link between intensive behavioral intervention for children with autism and best outcomes.