Autism & our CHAMPS team

If you already know our CHAMPS team (Childhood Autism Multidisciplinary Private Service), then you would know that it is a team of experts in the field of autism that we have brought together in collaboration with developmental paediatrician, Dr. Virginia Oliveira, of Southern Healthcare Specialists in Corrimal.

Going through the assessment process for autism can be a challenging thing for families, parents, and care givers. It is a complex process and a confusing system at times, with various professionals needing to be involved and different funding streams that might provide some form of compensation for the costs of the assessment. Then there are the next steps… intervention, NDIS, etc.

Our experience with autism spectrum disorders and the services within the Illawarra led us to develop a service that reduces the challenges of typical assessment processes. The CHAMPS team brings together all of the vital players in the assessment process, into one space and across as few assessment days as possible. This means that there is less of a need to run around between services, less coordination of appointments, and less effort required to have adequate communication between clinicians.

What is CHAMPS?

The CHAMPS assessment team includes a developmental paediatrician, clinical psychologist, clinical neuropsychologist, speech pathologist, and occupational therapist.

Part 1

There are two parts to a CHAMPS assessment. Once a referral is received from a paediatrician, the child being assessed will attend Marsden Psychology’s Kids Clinic in Woonona with the clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist to complete the two gold standard autism spectrum disorder assessments, the ADOS-2 and the ADI-R, as well as an IQ assessment, such as the WISC-V.

Part 2

Part 2 of the assessment occurs on a second day where the child and parents will be interviewed and assessed by the developmental paediatrician, clinical psychologist, speech pathologist, and occupational therapist.

The information collected across Part 1 & 2 of the CHAMPS assessment will be collated and interpreted by the clinicians and a diagnosis will be reached and recommendations provided in person at the end of Part 2 of the assessment. A report will be provided to the family shortly after the CHAMPS assessment, which may be used to obtain NDIS funding for ongoing interventions should a diagnosis of autism or other disability be found.

How to contact us

If you would like to enquire further about this service, please do not hesitate to contact our CHAMPS coordinator, Sophie Sanders, who will happily talk you through the process and help you to decide whether this is the right service for your child. Sophie can be reached on:

Ph: (02) 9139 0126
Fax: (02) 8322 8005
Email: champs@marsdenpsychology.com.au