TX LEND Article: Unique, Collaborative Program Improves Care for Children with Autism and Other Neurodevelopmental Disabilities

December 14, 2011

Website Link  http://www.uthouston.edu/media/story.htm?id=d9f79965-dabe-45ae-97b0-98bc04f8dee9&utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+UthealthCampusNewsHeadlines+%28UTHealth+Campus+News+Headlines%


Having recently completed graduate school, Faiza Sheikh knew she wanted to work with children with autism, but realized that she, like many other up-and-coming health care professionals, did not have the necessary experience to do so.

"There is a critical shortage of professionals who are adequately trained to treat children with both autistic spectrum disorders and neurodevelopmental disabilities (ASD/ND)," said Sheikh. "I was more than ready for the opportunity to learn how to improve care and facilitate access to service for these children."

Thanks to a new collaborative program developed at the Children's Learning Institute at The University of Texas Health Science Center at Houston (UTHealth), Faiza now has the chance to make an impact on the lives of the growing number of children with ASD/ND.

The LoneStar LEND (Leadership Education in Neurodevelopmental and Related Disabilities) program, funded through a $2.9 million grant from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services' Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is the first program of its kind in Texas and one of 43 LEND programs located at universities or major children's hospitals across the United States. Its mission is to prepare future leaders in the diagnosis and treatment of ASD/ND, increase the rate of accurate diagnosis of ASD/NDs in Texas, empower families to be an active participant in their child's treatment plan and improve ASD/ND service delivery and systems.

>>Read the full article at the link above.