CSH AUTISM Center of Excellence

New CSH Autism Center of Excellence Opens

Children’s Specialized Hospital, part of the RWJBarnabas Health Children’s Health network, has launched its newly enhanced program, CSH AUTISM, Children’s Specialized Hospital’s Autism Center of Excellence. The Center, located in New Brunswick, will provide services, training, advocacy, and research to support individuals with Autism, helping them reach their full potential and create lives with meaning, purpose, and choice.

“Through this newly established Center, we hope to provide high-quality services, training, and research that effectively advocates for equity for individuals with Autism across several focus areas,” said Malia Beckwith, MD, AVP of ambulatory medical practices and section chief of developmental behavioral pediatrics at Children’s Specialized Hospital. “By taking this integrated approach, success is embedded at every touchpoint for individuals with Autism from diagnosis to intervention and beyond.”

According to the most recent data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, New Jersey has the third highest rate of autism in the nation: 1 in 35 children, or 2.9% of 8-year-old children.

The Center’s services recognize the importance of clinical innovation to improve access to various evidence-based Autism therapies. Medical services include developmental behavioral pediatrics (DBP), physiatry, primary care, psychiatry, and system partners. Additionally, patients can receive therapy services such as ABA, early intervention, occupational therapy, physical therapy, psychology, severe behavior, and speech and feeding therapy.

Available community trainings will highlight the needs and strengths of individuals with Autism, and improve access to and quality of support. Programs include Navigating the Journey seminars, education support services, ASD-friendly medical services training, de-escalation training for staff, patient/family support for inpatient settings, and more. The General Pediatrics DBP training track and DBP-Primary Care collaboration are a few professional trainings from the Center, designed to increase access to diagnosis and support.

“The establishment of this Center opens a world of possibilities for those on the Autism spectrum,” shared Dr. Beckwith. “We are confident these offerings will create necessary and appreciated support.”

CSH AUTISM began offering services across all CSH sites this month. Additionally, a kick-off meeting was held March 11 for an esteemed group of community experts, including parents of and individuals with Autism Spectrum Disorder, who will serve to guide the vision of CSH AUTISM, through the CSH AUTISM Advisory Committee.

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