Health Care and the Autism Spectrum: A Guide for Health Professionals, Parents and Carers
"You'll just feel a little scratch then it will all be over." This well-worn phrase to reassure patients about injections is unlikely to win over the patient if they happen to have autism. Communication difficulties, sensory overload and extreme discomfort with physical contact are all traits common in autism that make basic patient care and routine medical procedures extremely difficult.
In a patient who is exquisitely sensitive to touch, how do you go about taking blood pressure or dressing a wound? How can you be sure that your autistic patient has given `informed' consent to treatment if you aren't sure that they have really understood the implications? What do you do about it? Equally, for people with autism, or the parent or carer of someone on the spectrum, healthcare issues loom very large in daily concerns.
Health Care and the Autism Spectrum is a ground-breaking volume that addresses the ethical issues as well as the practical challenges that everyone involved has to deal with. Every health care professional will have an increasing number of autistic patients on their list as diagnosis of this condition continues to spiral. Consequently, this book is urgently needed.