What a pleasure to read this statement, in a matter-of-fact-way, as the front page headline of the Academy Times last week. I blogged about Dr. Robinson’s perspective as a Clinical Professor of Pediatric at USC Keck School of Medicine, and want to share with you excerpts from the Times article, beginning with the importance of early intervention:
“Specifically, poor visual-perceptual processing is one of the many characteristics of ASD. But it is a vital one, and it’s one way that optometrists can get involved. Indeed, ‘children with challenges in visual-spatial thinking are lost in space’, Dr. Robinson said. Optometrists can help both in diagnosis of ASD – by looking for red flags – as well as in treatment. ‘We need you to help us’, Dr. Robinson said, by providing treatment such as visual-spatial integration training, ‘and to teach other health care practitioners what to do about this’.”
This dovetails perfectly with a visionhelp YouTube video on Autism just released, featuring Ryan and his Optometrist, Dr. Dan Fortenbacher. Interventions such as those Ryan received are precisely what Dr. Robinson is seeking. In fact, I’m going to share it with her right now, and encourage each of you to share this with pediatricians, other physicians and any professionals interacting with children on the autistic spectrum who may not be aware that, in Dr. Robinson’s words, Optometry is an essential part of autism treatment.