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Trust Autism and LD Team speak at Philippines conference

The Autism and learning disabilities team at the Tavistock and Portman NHS Foundation Trust was invited to speak about their work, at the 5th National Convention of the Philippine Society of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (PSCAP).

220 delegates – physicians, school counsellors and educators from across the Philippines, attended the event last month in Taguig City.

Members of the team sit at a table looking at a camera during a Zoom call

Our Autism and learning disabilities team attended the event remotely.  

Dr Myooran Canagaratnam, Consultant Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, and Dr Aleksandra Szczap, Specialist Registrar in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry, spoke first about the work of the Autism diagnostic service. Theyn explored the recent growing awareness in the UK regarding differences in the presentation of the condition in girls and young women, which was illustrated with case material from the clinic.

Dr Roupen Barounian, Principal Psychologist and Dr Krizia Javate, Clinical Psychologist then discussed the team’s therapeutic work, with emphasis on its multidisciplinary approaches, psychodynamic and systemic perspectives, and working closely with families and professional networks. One of their key messages was that whilst autistic children and young people can benefit from a number of different interventions, adaptations were necessary to take into account their particular needs.

Dr Kenneth Javate, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist, who is also a member of the PSCAP Conference’s organising committee said: “It was very helpful for our multidisciplinary audience to hear from international experts about autism, particularly the exciting new developments about the female phenotype. We appreciated how this population that can experience many difficulties that can bring about challenging dilemmas both in the consulting room and the classroom, and hearing about diagnosis and treatment at the Tavistock Clinic was definitely inspiring. We look forward to seeing how we could translate these insights into in our local practice in the Philippines”.

Dr Myooran Canagaratnam said: “We were delighted to have the opportunity to present our work at the PSCAP conference and enjoyed the stimulating discussion with delegates afterwards around issues such as the cooccurrence of Autism with ADHD, supporting autistic young people with gender identity issues, and the importance of considering cultural influences when working with this group. We hope that our organisations will be able to collaborate again in the future”.   

Wide view of conference room from behind, facing screens with image of zoom call showing a table with four team members smiling