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Dachel Media Update: Stigma, Screening, Diagnosis

Online newsBy Anne Dachel

Read Anne's comments after the jump.

July 30, 2013, New York Times: Working to Combat the Stigma of Autism

June 29, 2013, Newsday: Autism Screening App Released Amid Hopes of Faster Diagnosis

June 29, 2013, WWLP Chicopee, MA: New Autism Research Could Help With Diagnosis
 

 

New York Times
 
"Raising an autistic child is hard enough, let alone raising one in a culture in which the stigma surrounding autism still runs high. Now, inspired by a 2011 study of a South Korean city that found relatively high rates of autism, a leading advocacy group is teaming with churches, doctors, schools and news organizations in Flushing, trying gingerly to bring Korean parents around to the idea that if there is something unusual about their child, concealing it and avoiding help are absolutely the wrong things to do.

"It is a crucial moment for autism across the United States. The number of children who receive a diagnosis of autism has been rising for years, without any consensus about why, other than increased awareness of the condition." 

There can never be too much autism for Autism Speaks. This is about autism in the Korean American community and efforts to overcome the stigma attached to having the disorder.

Autism Speaks had Roy Grinker do the South Korean study in 2011 that found that one in ever 38 children there had autism and he's cited here too. No one was alarmed, because as Grinker has been saying for years, it isn't really more autism, it's just better recognition of a disorder that's always been around.
 
The Times has long failed our children and this story is just another opportunity to bewitch the public into believing that all the autism is "increased awareness of the condition." There are over 10,000 children in New York City schools with a diagnosis of autism and the reporter, Al Baker, isn't even mildly concerned about where they're all coming from. This is about acceptance, especially in a culture where they're stigmatized. What else is there for Autism Speaks? They've spent a lot of time and money trying to convince us that autism is genetic. They may be lighting up the world in blue for awareness on April 2, but it all stops there. They want everyone, including the Koreans, to accept autism as an unavoidable part of childhood today.
 
They see the exploding numbers as a good thing. High rates validate their existence. So, where will it all end? Are there millions of additional children with autism just waiting to be found? Will they happily take on the role of advocates for adults with autism when all these kids age out of school? Will there ever be a point where autism becomes a health care crisis and someone calls for stopping the epidemic?  There was no comment section.
 
 Newsday

"To empower parents and clinicians with reliable tools for autism screening, WebTeam Corporation, with expert guidance from Dr Michael Lewis, M.D., has come out with a screening app that will help parents and pediatricians know whether or not an infant is likely to get affected by autism..
":Signs of autism or other common developmental delays can appear as early as when a baby is 6-month old. The ANDDS app is designed to periodically evaluate a child's progress at ages of 8, 12, 15, 18, 24 and 36 months. By answering a set of specific questions that are assigned to each age slab, parents can test their child's progress and determine if he/she is at risk of developing autism. The app may also be a helpful tool for pediatricians or clinicians looking to have a centralized mechanism for screening and research....

"'ANDDS is simple to use. The test includes a series of Yes/No questions. These questions are framed by experts involved in autism and developmental disorder care and research. This makes the result as close to reality as possible. The final result is shown as one of the three different bands - Green, Yellow and Red. Green band signals the child is on target with the development. Yellow band tells parents to be more watchful whereas Red band recommends consulting the child's doctor,' said Jalpa Parekh, chief developer of ANDDS."

While this may sound like cutting edge science, it's really a pathetic response to what autism is doing to our children.

Why, in the face of an epidemic affecting one in every 50 children, one in 31 among boys alone, is it that the only thing we can do is to diagnosis it earlier? I do not think that parents, scared that their healthy baby may also end up with autism, will be comforted by a screening app.

WHY IS THIS HAPPENING? Why is a once rare disorder now so common that everyone knows someone with an autistic child?

Why is there officially no known cause or cure for autism? Why is there nothing a doctor can tell a new mom with a healthy baby so that her child doesn't also end up on the autism spectrum by age two? Why do experts tell us that 80 percent of autistic Americans are under the age of 18?
Early diagnosing means nothing in the face of a nightmare that no one can explain.
 
WWLP Chicopee, MA

"Years of research appear to be making strides."
 
I would like to ask Dr. Schwartz just how much early diagnosing we can stand.  Why is it the only thing mainstream medicine is interested in when it comes to autism?

Comments

Nish Parikh

ANDDS gives early indication to parents so that they can start intervention early.

Nish Parikh

I believe in therapeutic and educational intervention for independence. Earlier the diagnosis is done, more intense early intervention can be delivered. I believe in synchronized and holistic approach towards intervention using technology as an supplemental intervention. To expertise the process of learning most importantly life skills and some academic skill are required for lifetime independence. We have developed a patent pending method to teach children with autism using touch screen iPads or any mobile devices to teach this skills using structured curriculum. We have received a great success from our free apps in iTunes, Google Play, Nook and Kindle. ANDDS is one of our app developed from our collaboration with Dr. Lewis. https://www.facebook.com/ShaneshColors

instinct

On the subject. This is a constant battle of US parents against evil pharma.

http://www.infowars.com/no-mandatory-mental-health-screening-for-children/

jen

Wow guys, just when you thought it couldn't get any worse!

Linda

Pharma has previously targeted all children through the TeenScreen program, mental health screening planted by Pharma through Columbia University into the US and some foreign school systems. The history shows they are constantly and aggressively seeking new markets (victims). Autism is merely their latest profit making opportunity. TeenScreen was brought down in the US late last year. I hope that it was closed down overseas as well.

http://www.cchrint.org/tag/teenscreen/

instinct

John,
You are absolutely right. This is a sinister program to forcefully drug the children to their death. Euthanasia of children has been already proposed by many medical "ethicists". Alex Spourdalakis, whose health dramatically worsened on psychotropic drugs (which are pure poisons) is a tragic example of an autistic child treated with psycho-pharmaceuticals.

I remember, during Bush's Jr. regime one senator (working for pharma mafia) also tried to introduce (in the middle of night) a law about forceful screening and medicating of American children with psychotropic drugs, but fortunately the society including many doctors did not allow this to happen. Now they are trying the same through the back door. This is pure terror. Parents, who suspect autism in their child, should choose their own doctor for making diagnosis and should choose holistic methods of treatment. Autism is not a psychiatric disease, it is the whole body poisoning and inflammatory state induced mostly by toxic vaccines.

John Stone

Instinct

Yes, there seems to be little doubt about the strategy of Autism Speaks, in collaboration with the pharmaceutical industry. This was my comment on the appointment of Robert H Ring as chief science officer in succession to Geraldin Dawson a few days ago:-


My own feeling is that Robert Ring does not have Dawson's winsome charm. Ring it will be recalled was instrumental in putting together "a pre-competitive consortium" linking Autism Speaks with Pfizer, Lilly (!!!), Roche, Novartis and Janssen (I suppose you might call it a "ring") - a project which was excitedly being announced by AS simultaneously with the apparent discovery of universal autism rate of 1 in 38 based on an uncompleted survey in S Korea. Below is my letter in BMJ Rapid Responses last year:-

http://www.bmj.com/content/344/bmj.e3502/rr/588110

When autism becomes good news 5 June 2012

A particular concern is population screening projects for autism as a potential target group for newly developed psychiatric drugs.

A Time Magazine article last year [1] publicised a pilot screening project for autism, funded by US charity Autism Speaks, that had taken place in the Korean city of Goyang and apparently discovered an incidence among school children of 1 in 38. Lead author Dr Young Shin Kim was apparently not perturbed by the numbers:

“Kim stresses that the results of her study shouldn't alarm parents into thinking that autism has suddenly exploded in schools. "It doesn't mean there is an increase in new cases," she says. "We just didn't know how to find them and diagnose them. Now we know there are kids with social problems who are not being treated, and we know how to help them."”

Time reported:

“The researchers say they would expect to see similarly high rates of autism emerge in the U.S. and elsewhere if the same data collection strategy were used. "The kids picked up in Korea, many had never been recognized in medical records as having autism," says Geraldine Dawson, chief science officer for Autism Speaks. "That's what needs to be done, that kind of broad screening."”

However, the magazine did not report was that 67% of the screened-positive children seem to have pulled out before the study was completed [2]:

"For the 1,214 sampled screen-positive students, 869 parents (72%) consented to participate in the full assessment. Of these, 286 (33%) completed full assessments. Of those who completed the assessment, 201 (70%) were confirmed to have ASDs (autistic disorder, N=101; other ASDs, N=100), yielding a crude prevalence for any ASD of 0.36% (autistic disorder, 0.18%; other ASDs, 0.18%)."

What the report also did not disclose was that appointment that very same week of Robert H Ring to Autism Speaks:

"Robert H. Ring, previously a Pfizer senior director, will join Autism Speaks in Princeton, N.J., on June 1 in the newly created position of vice president of translational research. His focus will be on helping move drug experimentation from laboratories to clinical trials, "with the goal of improving outcomes for individuals with autism spectrum disorders," according to the nonprofit organization." [3]

While still at Pfizer Ring stated:

“This is a real opportunity to really make a difference for a huge unmet need using expertise we’ve acquired over a number of years. In fact we’re working right now to build a pre-competitive consortium amongst our competitors, including Lilly, Roche, Novartis, Janssen, and trying to agree that this is an important population to be developing medicines for…” [4]

This led to an announcement of a partnership between Autism Speaks, Roche and King's College, London earlier this year [5].

[1] Alice Park, 'South Korean Study Suggests Rate of Autism May Be Underestimated' http://healthland.time.com/2011/05/09/korean-study-suggests-rate-of-auti...

[2] Kim YS, Leventhal BL, Koh YJ, Fombonne E, Laska E, Lim EC, Cheon KA, Kim SJ, Kim YK, Lee H, Song DH, Grinker RR., 'Prevalence of autism spectrum disorders in a total population sample.' Am J Psychiatry. 2011 Sep;168(9):904-12. Epub 2011 May 9.

[3] Lee Howard, 'Past Pfizer autism unit chief to join major advocacy group
By Lee Howard' 12 May 2011, http://www.theday.com/article/20110512/BIZ02/305129344/-1/BIZ

[4] Pfizer News, 'Autism research unit at Pfizer to address autism spectrum disorders'

[5] 'Unprecedented Academic-Industry Collaboration Seeks New Drugs and Novel Treatments for Autism', http://www.autismspeaks.org/about-us/press-releases/research-academic-in...

Competing interests: Autistic son

Not to forget Adriana Gamondes;

http://www.ageofautism.com/2012/03/the-phoenicians-autism-recovery-denial-drug-profits-and-the-medias-flat-earth-2012.html

instinct

The only purpose of this screening is to generate more customers for toxic psychotropic drugs. Nobody in the US cares about the health of children, except their parents. I am sure that the next step will be enforced by guns medication of the children. Now they are working on supertoxic vaccine , which is supposed to counteract effects of other toxic vaccines. This is the direction, where this country is going.

Adam G

"Are there millions of additional children with autism just waiting to be found?"

According to the CDC's 2008 ADDM survey, about 20% of children with an ASD are either undiagnosed or misdiagnosed.

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