Early childhood. Autism, dys disorders… a new guide integrated into the health record

Early childhood.  Autism, dys disorders… a new guide integrated into the health record

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Autism, dys disorders, attention deficit… Neurodevelopment disorders affect one in six people. Due to this high prevalence, the government wants“early identification” is “systematized”.

Better identify and take care of them

Also, a new guide to help general practitioners and pediatricians identify and treat them will be integrated into the health record. It was unveiled Thursday, on the occasion of the General Medicine Congress which runs until March 23.

More than 68,000 children already identified

The first version of the “Guide for identifying unusual signs of development in children under seven years of age” had been used since 2020, and made it possible to “identify more than 68,000 children”, specifies the press release from the Interministerial Delegation for Strategy National Institute for Neurodevelopmental Disorders (NDD).

The new guide, whose grid will be incorporated into the health record “in spring 2024 for the paper version and at the end of the year for the digital version”, completes various points. Among them: the age of the children screened. The validity of the examination grids has thus been clarified no longer based on a given age (six months for example), but on a range of ages (six to 11 months, 24 to 35 months, etc.). Certain examinations requiring equipment which was not systematically present in general practitioners’ offices have been eliminated.

New questions

In addition, questions on neuro-visual disorders, not present in the first version, have been integrated. Questions have also been added to better identify children with attention deficit disorder with or without hyperactivity (ADHD).

As for screening for autism spectrum disorders, it will be refined by adding questions to identify children with a less severe autism spectrum disorder, notably asking in more detail about social interactions.

“Making doctors’ work easier”

“This new version will facilitate the work of general practitioners who are very involved in screening children,” assured Etienne Pot, interministerial delegate for the national strategy for TND. The health record is given free of charge to all children shortly after birth. It is most often delivered by the maternity ward.

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