Autism Evaluations at HLC Therapy Group, LLC
WHAT SETS US APART?
We so often hear parents talk about how their child is different at home versus school or in public. When a child is only evaluated in an office, important pieces of that child's puzzle may be missing. HLC takes a "whole child-whole family" multidisciplinary approach with evaluation components that encompass both the natural home environment and a novel office setting. Multidisciplinary means there are several pediatric specialists coming together to make the most informed clinical decisions for comprehensive treatment planning and optimal outcomes. All therapists on this team are certified in administration of the Autism Diagnostic Observation Scale, 2nd edition (ADOS-2), which is a gold standard assessment for collecting objective information about social communication skills, restricted interests and repetitive behaviors that are characteristic of Autism Spectrum Disorder.
HERE'S HOW IT WORKS
Several pieces of information are needed to initiate this process, but don't worry, we will help you through it! When you reach out to set up an appointment, we will check your insurance benefits and review your coverage with you, along with taking your general information. Then a therapist will send you several forms to fill out from home that are submitted back to us electronically. Lastly, a therapist will contact you directly to schedule your appointments and answer any questions.
This will take place in your home. A speech pathologist and occupational therapist will conduct evaluations in your child's own environment to assess communication, sensory, motor, and feeding skills. Clinic visits at HLC are available for this appointment if home visits are not feasible for any reason.
Given knowledge about a child's strengths and areas of difference or difficulty, parents are better informed to ask the right
questions and seek out the most beneficial supports to meet their child's needs.
This will take place at HLC Therapy Group in Lake in the Hills, IL. One of the therapists from your home visit will conduct a specific Autism assessment, through play and fun. Any additional information or observations needed will be collected at this time.
This is a teleconference consultation with the Neuropsychologist. The assessments completed by HLC will be reviewed by the doctor prior to this visit, and the results will be discussed with the family as a part of this visit. Parents can expect one of 3 outcomes from this visit: 1. An Autism diagnosis with next steps, 2. An Autism diagnosis with a recommendation for further testing with the neuropsych, 3. No Autism diagnosis with or without recommendation for further testing with the neuropsych. The reason additional testing may be advised is that many neurological conditions have similar traits and it is our goal to be comprehensive to best understand your child’s abilities and needs.
This will take place at HLC Therapy Group or via telehealth. Member(s) of the HLC diagnostic team will provide parents with recommendations and resources for therapies, schools, and other opportunities in the community that may be beneficial. This also allows parents the opportunity to ask any residual questions following the final visit with the neuropsychologist.
MEET THE TEAM
Sara Zielinski MS, OTR/L Occupational Therapist | HLC Therapy Group, LLC
Sara Zielinski attended undergraduate and graduate school at Western Michigan University, earning her degree as an occupational therapist. Sara has worked as a pediatric occupational therapist providing direct therapy and consultation services to children and families through clinic, school-based, and Early Intervention programs. Sara has focused her career on the evaluation and treatment of children with sensory processing challenges and motor deficits.
Her clinical interests include musculoskeletal and physical impairments, traumatic brain injury (TBI), Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder, Autism Spectrum Disorder, Sensory Processing Disorder, and Developmental Disabilities. Sara’s interests outside of the clinic include spending time with her husband, 3 daughters, and 2 dogs, going camping, and finding every opportunity to spend time outdoors.
Christine Sumara M.A. CCC-SLP/L
Christine Sumara is a pediatric clinical speech language pathologist and founder of HLC Therapy Group, LLC. Christine earned her Masters Degree in Speech-Language Pathology at Northern Illinois University. While initially working with adults rehabilitating from brain injuries, Christine has spent the majority of her career in pediatrics working in a variety of school, early intervention and private practice settings. Christine specializes in motor planning deficits often seen in Childhood Apraxia of Speech or apraxia secondary to Autism Spectrum Disorder as well as Pediatric Feeding Disorders.
Christine’s professional and personal values are based on Hope, Laughter, and Connection (HLC- get it?). No coincidence that these are also the initials of Christine’s three children, Henry, Liam and Caroline, who keep her and her husband proud, full of joy, and on their toes-constantly learning everyday!