AUTISM SPECTRUM DISORDER (ASD) ASSESSMENT - CHILDREN
What does an ASD /autism assessment involve?
The assessment generally takes place over a 6 to 7 week period, and includes:
a comprehensive structured interview (approximately 2 hours) with you, the parent/caregiver
a cognitive assessment and observation session with your child (approximately 2 hours)
communication with the speech pathologist and paediatrician to compile a report addressing the DSM5 criteria for ASD
a dedicated feedback session (50 minutes) with you to go through our detailed written report
If required, a session of school/childcare observation by our psychologist may also be undertaken and additional charges will apply.
What about the speech pathologist component of the assessment?
We have speech pathologists that we work closely with and they collaborate with us to complete the assessment. Depending on your child’s needs and the speech pathologist’s availability, we may see your child together at your home/child’s school or separately at our respective offices. If you have worked with a speech pathologist prior to seeing us, we are happy to work with them to produce a combined report.
Please note that the speech pathologist’s fees are in addition to our fees and you will need to clarify these with the speech pathologist.
How long will I have to wait to get the results?
Please allow up to 4 weeks for us to analyse the information collected, compile the report and communicate with the speech pathologist and paediatrician involved to come to an agreement about your child’s diagnosis.
What is involved in the feedback session?
Our extensive clinical experience and the research tell us it is very important to support you as parents/caregivers to understand your child’s diagnosis or non-diagnosis, as it can be a mixed emotional experience for parents. Being well-informed and supported at the time of diagnosis means you are more likely to adapt well and engage better with intervention services.
During the feedback session, we will talk you through our report including our recommendations for the next steps to take with your child. We allow plenty of time for your questions to be answered. A copy of the latest edition of the Autism Parent’s Handbook (by Heidi Brandis) will be provided if your child receives a diagnosis of ASD. If your child does not meet the criteria for ASD, recommendations for future directions will be discussed.
How much does an autism assessment cost?
The total cost of the ASD assessment with our psychologist is $1300. If a session of school/childcare observation is required, additional costs will apply (approximately $200 if the location is within 20 kms of our practice).
Payment for ASD assessments can be made in instalments by prior agreement. However, full payment of the assessment fee must be made before the psychologist can provide their written diagnostic assessment report.
Can I get a rebate from Medicare?
Medicare items are available for the diagnosis and treatment for children with ASD aged under 13 years old. These items apply to services provided by psychologists and speech pathologists, on referral from a private paediatrician or psychiatrist. A maximum of 4 services per child can be claimed from Medicare as part of an ASD diagnostic assessment.
How can I find out more information?
We understand this may be a daunting and challenging time for your family and we would be happy to talk with you further about our approach to ASD diagnostic assessment.