Assessment and Diagnostic Process
The benefits of getting a diagnosis
The decision to engage in the steps of an assessment process can generate its share of apprehensions. This decision inevitably comes with the acceptance that our child may end up this process with an official diagnosis.
Nevertheless, obtaining a formal diagnosis is the way to open the doors to appropriate services for your child, and thus promote better conditions in all spheres of his life. The diagnosis helps bring some answers so that you can learn more about the diagnosed condition, better understand how the child is functioning, and glimpse the future based on more precise information.
The steps of an assessment process
The first step is to discuss the situation with your family doctor, who can then refer you to a specialist. You can also go to the psychosocial intake service of the CLSC in your area. A social worker will meet with you and assess the need to refer you to the public resources. If you do not have a family doctor and if your CLSC does not offer psychosocial intake, contact Info-Social at 8-1-1. The nurse will direct you to the appropriate resource.
The assessment process itself may take more or less time, depending on the condition to be assessed. Sometimes, a few meetings are enough for a professional to be able to rule on the situation. In other cases, several professionals may need to assess different aspects depending on their expertise (for example, doctor, psychologist, occupational therapist, speech therapist, neuropsychologist, child psychiatrist). Also, it is common for parents to be called upon in the process to provide their observations, the history of the child since birth, the evolution of the challenges encountered, etc. School stakeholders can also be called upon since they have often accumulated observations that are relevant for the evaluation. Following the meetings, all of the information collected is recorded in a report which will be given to you and explained by the professional in charge. Recommendations are generally made as to the professional help needed to support you in your day-to-day life, and referrals to specialist services can be made, if necessary.
There may be a delay, varying in length depending on the region and the urgency of the situation, between your request and the start of the assessment process. In the meantime, do not hesitate to contact the emergency services for the necessary assistance. When the situation requires it, calling emergency services will necessarily speed up the process and revise your child's assessment priority.
Some parents may prefer to hire a professional in private practice to obtain an assessment and diagnosis in a shorter timeframe. In this case, most private insurance companies cover the costs related to the diagnostic evaluation conducted by a psychologist, with a prescription from a doctor. However, some delays should be expected with several private professionals.
You need support regarding the assessment process? A VFC worker can assist you. Request services
Offered by the Valcartier Family Centre· 418 844-6060 · 1 877 844-6060