Autism Research

  1. [FONT="Book Antiqua"]
    I am brand new to this website, although I have accessed it often. I am a new grad (BSN). I have a prior degree in Public Health Science and a minor in Early Intervention. I worked for one year as an EI and came across many families with autistic children. These cases were always the hardest for me, as I did not know what to do for the families. That is part of the reason I became a nurse instead.

    I would really like to go back to school to become a NP with a specialization in something related to autism. I have always known I wanted to work with special needs children, but I didn't know exactly in what way....

    If has finally hit me!!!! I really want to research and provide care for families and children affect by autism, anywhere on the spectrum. Especially in the city I am from, I am not finding ANY true autism specialists. We have an autism division of our DDSNB, but they are overrun with families simply seeking an answer to WHAT is wrong with their children.

    As a new nurse, with limited experience, and the economic downturn of society. I am seeking help as to how I can get more involved in autism research and care. I feel like the only want to really learn about these vastly different cases is to become involved with the families in some way.

    I will move anywhere I need to, attend school again (I want to anyway), and truly want to devote my life to finding an acceptable solution for at least some families. I would eventually like to bring my research into practice back in South Carolina, where I live now. Does anyone know of any locations where I can get involved with these types of families and possibly start helping with research. Development Peds I know is where I need to be... I am just looking to get more involved.
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    About rcoulte

    Joined: Apr '09; Posts: 1; Likes: 3
    Graduate in May; from US


  3. by   PNP09
    Congratulations on your carrer goals!
    I share your passion for helping families with autism. I am a nurse with about 7 years L/D experience but my passion turned to autism when my son was diagnosed. It is a difficult journey that families experience as you said. I decided to pursue my passion by way of an advanced practice degree as a pediatric nurse practitioner. When I started at my first clinical site, I shared this with the providers and the owner of the practice called around and arranged a clinical experience for my with a Developmental Specialist this summer (start next month!). I live in Central Florida and am also aware of the lack of Autism Specialists. It seems that you must be in a larger city to find such providers. I will be working with one in Orlando this summer, I think that my current preceptor knew of 2 in the area. More resources are becoming available, finally.
    Just out of curiosity, is South Carolina lacking when it comes to autism services? I had considered moving there.
    Also, there is a conference in Hilton Head, SC next month offered through Hackensack University with 3 days focused on Developmental Issues and Autism which is geared toward pediatric providers.
    Good luck, and thank you for caring enough to want to help those so desperately in need of understanding.
    Last edit by dianah on Apr 30, '09 : Reason: Removed name, as naming names is TOS (Terms of Service) violation
  4. by   mommyonamission
    Hi - Funds through the CDC are currently supporting a national research effort into autism and ASD (autism spectrum disorders). If you're interested in working in research now I'd say do a search on autism and the CDC. Visit their website and browse the latest sites across the country that are participating (I used to work for the PA site and worked with a number of nurses who were also a part of the study). From there I'd recommend visiting each individual site's website for more contact information and detail, if available. You may want to also look at some autism society, non-profits, or association websites to investigate further. There are some wonderful people working in autism research. I would've stayed working with the group I was working for, but my husband's job relocated to a different state.

    Good luck to you!
  5. by   mama_d
    I live near St. Louis, and the Judevine Center for Autism is located here.

    There are also several universities in the area...St. Louis University and Washington University both are considered prestigious institutions (in this area at least, and I'm assuming more widely as well). Cardinal Glennon and Children's Hospital are in St. Louis as well (both are pediatric hospitals) and have pediatric neurologists with offices on campus. I know SLU has a DNP program, not sure about Wash U.

    My baby brother (gads, he'll be 21 this year!) has Asperberger's, so I've had a little experience with it.
  6. by   BlueeyesRN
    i am an rn, bsn who became a nurse after my son was diagnosised with auditory and speech delay and then eventual autism. he is 13 today.

    the best email/call:
    contact autism speaks. this group merged with naar, national alliance on autism research. (the largest non-profit group that has expanded world-wide).

    checking with austism society of america--they do research:

    locally, in my area, the university of north texas, does autism research. i often get information on our large yahoo news group--yet another option. blog on a large autism site in yahoo for info from parent, teachers, etc.,

    please consider autism research for teen and adults. one national editorial writer pointed out the lack of research for adults. his brother is forgotten since most of the dollars go for the youngest bunch. the $$ defintiely seem to be more for the youngest to lower grade levels. just a thought...

    i can say as a parent i am eternally grateful to all who work directly and indirectly with children/adults with asd, or other developmental issues. i wish you well.

    as a
  7. by   Julz034
    Hi there,

    Let me first start by saying thank you, thank you, thank you! My son was diagnosed three years ago with aspbergers autism. There are nowhere near enough providers for Autism that are needed! I, too, plan on beoming a NP. I plan on getting my post-cert in Mental health/Psychiatry NP. I want to work with peds, teens, and adults. My advice to you would be to talk to Providers in your area to see what direction they think you should go in. In Ohio, where we're from, our pediatrican will only "handle" Autism to a certain point. My son has severe behavioral issues, and it's past their ability to do anything with him, and one of the Dr's specializes in Mental health, however, he has to be seen by an actual Psyciatrist. I would definitely say look into the post-cert for the Psychiatric NP, rather than the Pediatric NP, there is only so much you can do in that area. Good Luck to you, and thanks again! =)
  8. by   BlueeyesRN
    Great advise. Congrats on your career path. I know you will be very busy once you receive your psych NP. My son has been seeing a psych NP in TX and I often prefer her over the psychiatrist. Good luck!