When doctors diagnosed Darcie Crawford’s 2-year-old daughter with autism, she and her husband were left scrambling to find treatment options. They didn't know where to turn to help Lauren at first.
"It was really devastating. We couldn't even leave the hospital,” Darcie Crawford said.
After five years of visits to specialists and out-of-pocket expenses, Crawford was grateful to have found the help she'd been searching for at the Hospital for Special Care’s new Autism Center.
Dr. John Molteni, who runs the center, said they try to help parents identify concerns that they have for their child, clarify diagnostics and provide treatment options.
One of the center’s goals is to provide help for an underserved population of children with autism, including those whose families have limited resources to access the kind of specialized care they need. It’s also a place where parents can get a game plan on how to care for an autistic child.
"It would have been so much more helpful had I gotten the diagnosis from someone that could actually point me to treatment and tell me what to do. And I think that's what this offers,” Crawford said.
Specialists from the autism center want to reach out to children who need inpatient care.
The Hospital for Special Care’s has a plan to open an inpatient facility in the near future and is working to secure funding for the project.
The center officially opens next month, but officials said they already have a growing waiting list of hopeful patients.
Hospital for Special Care will host a special autism workshop on March 9.