MediaPlanet 13 Apr 2021 – The Importance of Early Diagnosis and Intervention for Kids with FASD Based on recent epidemiological studies, it’s estimated that there are over one million people with Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) in Canada, making this one of the leading causes of developmental disability in the country.
Category: Identification, Prevention and Treatment
It is critical that FASD is identified or even better still, diagnosed as soon as possible. Some times it cant be identified until the child reaches puberty, other times it is clearly evident at birth. The sooner the condition can be identified or diagnosed, the sooner that strategies, interventions and accommodations can be put into place, the better it will be for the child and family. If inapproprate strategies are used eg strategies that are usually used for people without a cognitive impairment, further damage can be done.
It is therefore critical that as soon as it is identified that FASD may be a factor, that appropraite strategies, interventions and accommodations are utilised. Should the condition not be FASD, no harm will be done by using these strategies.
FASD is usually said to be 100% preventable. The rffada does not believe this is the case. There are always reasons that alcohol is consumed. In Australia, those reasons are primarily lack of education (ie media campaign) and lack of consistent messages from health practitioners. There are also unplanned pregnancies which account for around 50% if pregnancies.
There is no ‘treatment’ as such for FASD however managing the many secondary conditions that affect people with FASD is critical. Medication is one of the most critical interventions that can be used to support a person with FASD. There are other evidence-based strategies; practice-based strategies and wisdom-based strategies which are also important.
Online training for professionals
This CPD accredited course has been adapted for use in the UK by health professionals and everyone interested in increasing their knowledge about FASD. It is funded by the Alcohol Education and Research Council.
Alcohol in pregnancy – training for midwives
This is a three-year project to train midwives across the country about FASD. This year NOFAS-UK organised two CPD accredited study days for midwives.
The next study days are on 4th March in London and 18th March in Manchester (click here for details). To book a place please call 0208 458 5951 or complete the Booking Form and email it to firstname.lastname@example.org
To receive one complimentary copy of the “Alcohol in Pregnancy – Information for Midwives” booklet, please email: email@example.com with your full postal address and profession.
Government of Ontario News (Canada) – Ontario Expanding Diagnostic Services for Fetal Alcohol Spectrum DisorderThe Ontario government is investing $2.8 million annually to expand Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder (FASD) diagnostic services by funding 12 new FASD clinics for a total of 21 funded FASD diagnostic clinics across the province.
Byline Times (UK) – Lack of Specialist Services is Failing Children with Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Susan Nathan explains how children and young people with foetal alcohol spectrum disorder in the UK are not receiving adequate services due to the lack of understanding of their needs.
Karin Heimdahl Vepsä (2020) Is it FASD? And does it matter? Swedish perspectives on diagnosing fetal alcohol spectrum disorders, Drugs: Education, Prevention and Policy, DOI: 10.1080/09687637.2020.1841117
Chris Melore (21 July 2020) Alarming survey: 1 in 4 young adults don’t know women shouldn’t drink while pregnant. Study Finds.
Kyle K (3 December 2019) Adults in the N.W.T. can soon get diagnosed at a new FASD clinic. “We’ve missed a huge population of people,” said Shawna Pound, the territory’s adult FASD program co-ordinator. CBC News, Canada.
Mary Ward (22 October 2019) Pregnant mums’ ability to cope with stress may affect health of child. Sydney Morning Herald
BC Mental Health and Substance Use Services (current 2019) Adult Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder Assessments. Assessments for incarcerated adults to decide whether they are eligible for services from Community Living BC, an organization that provides services for people with developmental disabilities.
Carl Hnatyshyn (10 October 2019) Pathways program helps those with fetal alcohol disorder. Resource worker Amber Arnold hopes to change that reality by speaking, creating programs and holding events to make Sarnia-Lambton into what she calls an FASD-informed community. This Week: Sarnia and Lambton County.
Donald KA, Wedderburn CJ, Barnett W, Nhapi RT, Rehman AM, Stadler JAM, et al. (2019) Risk and protective factors for child development: An observational South African birth cohort. PLoS Med 16(9): e1002920.