Early Intervention in Life on the Autism Spectrum
June 17, 2014
Hosted by Dr. Gordon Atherley
Tasha Kheiriddin, writer and broadcaster based in Toronto, Canada, highlights her career in law, politics, media, public policy and communications. She discusses her family caregiving for her daughter Zara, who lives on the part of the autism spectrum called Asperger’s syndrome. She describes Asperger’s syndrome and how it began for Zara. She identifies its challenges for young children and their family caregivers. She discusses the interventions and when and why these are needed. She describes the interventions Zara received, and explains which of her challenges changed for the better and which remained. She says what she thinks the future without the interventions would have held for Zara, and what it now holds thanks to the inventions. She says what more she would like to do and see done to address the needs of children who are living on the Autism Spectrum. She shares her message for family caregivers of children living their lives on the Autism Spectrum.
Family Caregivers Unite!
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Family caregivers are the people who provide care to partners, parents, children, brothers, sisters, cousins, friends, neighbors and even co-workers. They are the people who provide care when everyone else has gone home. They are the people who organize the functioning of the home for the person with special needs, and for the family as a whole. They are the coordinators of care, the managers of appointments, the preventers of loneliness, and the makers of decisions even to the point of Power of Attorney. And they are so often people who themselves are burdened with their own health challenges and who may be in only marginally better health than the persons to whom they are providing family caregiving.
Dr. Gordon Atherley
Dr Gordon Atherley holds the British equivalent of the Canadian PhD and MD degrees, and LLD, Honoris Causa, from Canada’s Simon Fraser University. His awards include Fellow of the Royal Society of Arts, UK. His medical specialties are occupational medicine and public health.
As first President and Chief Executive Officer of the Canadian Centre for Occupational Health and Safety, the Canadian equivalent of the US National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, he led the creation of Canada’s electronic information service in occupational health and safety, now used in more than 40 countries.
In academia, he held senior, tenured, full-time positions, including departmental chair, in university faculties of physics, engineering, and medicine. He is the author of a textbook and numerous articles and publications.
Since retiring from medical practice, he’s built up Greyhead Associates, which critically researches the safety, effectiveness and fairness of health services for persons with special needs.
Through Virtual Care International, a company of which he’s President, he’s involved in providing sensible technology to family caregivers to help them with their responsibilities, workloads, and concerns.
Now an activist, he urges family caregivers to unite because, more and more, it’s not just their families who depend on them, it’s also the healthcare system as a whole, as it struggles to meet more and more needs of more and more people.