Call in specialist help
Suppose: Your child with (traits of) autism has received primary healthcare. And this help is not helping or is not enough to improve your child's behaviour and development. Your child can then be referred to a specialist. For example, to a medical specialist or specialised organisation. Or to a specialist mental health organisation.
A more specialised organisation/healthcare provider: medical
For possible medical problems of your child, the primary healthcare provider can refer you to a medical specialist. For example:
- a paediatrician
- a paediatric neurologist
- an ENT specialist
- a children’s rehabilitation centre
Specialised mental healthcare (s-GGZ)
Do concerns about your child's behaviour and/or development persist? Is, for example, autism suspected? Then an organisation for specialised mental healthcare (s-GGZ) can be involved. For this help, you will need a referral from your GP, het‘youth healthcare’ - JGZ (before known as consultatiebureau )), the Centrum voor Jeugd en Gezin (or ‘Centre for Children and Families’ - CJG), the social neighbourhood team or Integrale Vroeghulp- IVH (or ‘Integral Early Intervention’).
An s-GGZ organisation with specialist knowledge in the areas of very young children can investigate your child's problems (diagnostics). He/she will then draw up a support or treatment plan. Child psychiatrists, psychologists and remedial educationalists, among others, work at an s-GGZ organisation.
It can be quite challenging for parents to get a referral for your child to the specialised GGZ. Yet, it is important not to passively wait out your child’s development if you suspect a developmental disorder such as autism. It's not about getting "a label," but about getting early targeted help. This way you can prevent your child from missing out on developmental opportunities.
The specialised GGZ can also advise you on how your family might be supported. For this, you can go to specialised Expertiseteams voor Autisme bij Jonge Kinderen (AJK-teams) in your area.