When William wasn’t developing communication and language at 18 months, and even seemed to be regressing, his parents shared their concerns with his pediatrician, who referred the family to Vanderbilt’s Division of Developmental Medicine. There a psychologist with the Vanderbilt Kennedy Center’s Treatment and Research Institute for Autism Spectrum Disorders (TRIAD) diagnosed William as having an autism spectrum disorder with accompanying language impairment.
William’s parents were referred to TRIAD’s Evaluation Support Team for initial follow-up support and education through two home visits with a TRIAD Educational/Behavioral Consultant. Next, the family met weekly, for 12 weeks, with a TRIAD therapist as they worked together on William’s behavior and language. This “one-on-one” treatment allowed William and his parents to focus on his individual needs and how they as a family could work together to help him reach his language goals and begin to interact socially with other children his age.
William’s mom writes: “We were concerned about how William’s speech delay would impact his social skills and his overall ability to learn. But we have experienced and seen first-hand how early intervention is providing our family with the tools to help insure that William’s potential to complete everyday activities, communicate, and learn is maximized. We cannot say enough about how the treatment we have received has given us more hope than we ever imagined possible, and provided us with techniques we can use and practice at home. As parents, we are developing the tools needed to help our son make meaningful and measurable progress.”
“Given us hope”
“The treatment we have received has given us more hope than we ever imagined possible, and provided us with techniques we can use and practice at home.”
–Elizabeth Brooks, William’s mother
For 50 years, Vanderbilt Kennedy Center clinicians, researchers, educators, and therapists have partnered with families and communities to improve the lives of children and adults with intellectual and developmental disabilities. Together we have opened doors—to inclusive early education and education, to postsecondary education, to community employment, to full satisfying lives in our communities.
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