Tuesday, October 3, 2017

Autism Screening is Free In Stigler

The Pervasive Parenting Center (PPC) will provide free autism screening to families in eastern Oklahoma on Oct. 16 in Stigler.

The services are available by appointment only, and will be held at Kiamichi Technology Center in Room B from 8:30 a.m. to 4 p.m.

Thanks to training from the Oklahoma Autism Center, and a donation from the Cherokee Nation, PPC is now offering screening services in eastern Oklahoma.

They can also provide them, by appointment, to anyone at their office in Poteau.

Early identification and early intervention are key to ensure optimal outcomes for individuals with autism spectrum disorders. The first steps in this process are awareness and screening. Families should be aware of the developmental milestones that children typically reach around certain ages as well as warning signs that could possibly indicate risk for ASD or other developmental delays.

Screening provides families who have concerns about their child's development to quickly and efficiently find out if their child is at risk for ASD and needs further assessment. Screening is not the same thing as diagnostic evaluation and cannot identify whether a child does or does not have autism. Instead, screening is a tool, or stepping stone, that can determine what the next step should be.

For parents with concerns about their child's development, screening can show possible risk for Autism Spectrum Disorder, or other delays, and what sort of further assessment may be needed. All screenings include resources and referrals to help the family take the next steps toward providing for their child's long-term developmental health.

“This is something that is needed in the area,” said Kodey Toney, center director. “We have some screening resources in the area, but they are very limited, and have become harder to access. This is something that we now offer and are making an effort bring it to the families.”

According to the Center for Disease Control 1 in 68 are diagnosed with the neurological disorder. Autism Spectrum Disorder affects children’s social and language skills.

The PPC was created to help families in eastern Oklahoma find resources available for people with disabilities. For more information, or for an appointment call (918) 647-1255 or email tyarbery@pervasiveparentingcenter.org.

Sally Maxwell, Senior News Director

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