April 12, 2008

Local Bloomington, IL Doctors Don't Show Much Interest in Autism

Reading articles like this is discouraging. After all that has happened this month to see an autism presentation at a University canceled due to lack of interest from doctors is quite telling.

It brought to mind the comments of one of the mothers in Autism: The Musical. 'I don't know how to make them value her'.

Why do so few doctors value our children?

Local doctors don't show much interest in autism

My family was happy to see that The Pantagraph had a blurb about the upcoming discussion regarding early identification of autism and autism awareness sponsored by the Autism Spectrum Institute, Autism Clinic at Illinois State University, the Autism Society of McLean Cunty, SPICE, Marcfirst and Child and Families Connection 16 at Ewing Manor on April 3.

I was looking forward in hearing what Dr. Charles Morton had to discuss and to pass on to the local physicians - the target audience.

When I phoned the Autism Clinic at ISU on Tuesday to inquire if this was open to the public, the clinic informed me that, due to low physician response/interest, they were canceling the presentation.

Much to my chagrin, this solidifies my theory that the local medical community doesn't appear to be interested in this very important health issues facing us as a society today.

I know that that might be an over-generalization, but I have seen it.

There were only a total of 10 physicians responding to attend; I think that is telling.

The local universities, service centers and private practice therapists have much to offer. My family believes that early identification and intervention are key in helping a child become all that they are able to be and more.

One in 150 children will be affected by autism and those numbers will be increasing. So if you don't know anyone affected by autism, you soon will.

Julie Gifford


Tom said...


You ask, "Why do so few doctors value our children?"

I think it's denial.

They can't acknowledge the reality of what our children suffer, because at some level (buried as deeply as they can bury it) they know what's causing the suffering.

I think denial is also why some parents refuse to see the value of biomedical treatment.

To acknowledge the value of biomedical treatment, you have to see that your child is injured, hurting physically, and not just "different," and not just "put in a different package by God," (i.e., it's all genetic; it's fate and unchangeable).

You have to know, or at least suspect, that somehow, you are partly to blame (at least, I feel some guilt, though mostly anger at being duped).

You have to feel bad, maybe, for fully vaccinating without questioning any of it, for not knowing about the mercury, for not believing other mothers, for ignoring your own gut feelings, for not knowing better.

And when I see other mothers' comments on biomedical, it strikes me that those who aren't using it don't just ignore it, they feel some weird need to mock it, call it crazy, dismiss that it does, in fact, work for lots of kids.

Why in the world would anyone do that?

Only one answer I can see: denial.

In my experience, nothing at all can break through denial in the hard cases.

We have to work more and more with our friends, and their numbers are growing, and try to educate young people.

It's been said elsewhere, but I'll repeat it here: Many, if not most, of the older doctors will go to their graves in denial of the tragedy that's taken place, and in denial of their part in it.

But there are younger doctors, and some older ones who've seen it all along.

We continue to work with anyone at all--journalists, scientists, politicians, doctors, parents--who can get it. I feel sorrow for those who read all of this and still can't get it.

Terri Lewis

Elizabeth said...

My son's pediatrician refused to do any of the tests to guide treatment for autism that I gave her from an internet site. Are they so "hands off" now that they can't even use technology that has taken decades to invent? If I had asked her for a pill, she would have immediately written a prescription. Something's very wrong with that picture. For crying out loud, why do they even need medical malpractice insurance when they can just blame a manufacturer? It's not like they're doing anything...seriously, they do nothing for us.