The Autism Center of the Studer Family Children's Hospital at Ascension Sacred Heart provides services for children on the autism spectrum. Having a child with autism may require additional support and care. We provide families education and resources to help care for their child. This includes training family members and caregivers how to care for your child in your home, at school and in community settings.
At the Autism Center, we start by getting to know you and your child. By better understanding your child, we create a personalized care plan. Our multi-disciplinary team provides a range of services, including:
- Applied Behavior Analysis (ABA)
- Occupational therapy
- Speech therapy
- Feeding therapy
- Parent support, education and hands-on training
- Social skills groups for various ages
- Group training for families and professional
The Autism Center was designed with your child’s needs in mind. We understand that too much noise or groups of people can be overly stimulating for some children, so we offer a calm space. There are private rooms for individual sessions and larger rooms for group sessions.
- Private treatment rooms
- A large open space to be used for treatment, as well as caregiver-education classes
- "Calm," low-sensory room equipped with a Vecta Mobile Sensory Station, which is designed to calm autistic children using a stereo, interactive bubble column, projector and colorful fiber-optic "tails" for children to braid or comb with their fingers.
Focusing on family-centered care
At The Children's Hospital, we understand that each family has unique needs. And no one knows your child more than you do. We work with you to deliver the care that’s right for your child and encourage you to be involved in their therapy sessions. Family involvement makes a big impact on how effective your child’s care plan is. You are a valued member of your child's care team, and your input is important.
We also understand families need support to help their child communicate and develop social skills. To help your child succeed and to support you along this journey, we offer parent-training classes, individual consultations and hands-on instruction. We’re here for your family.
Parent education classes
Our team offers the following classes to help you along your child's journey with autism. Pre-registration is required for all classes. Classes are open to all families in the community, no matter where you are receiving treatment. For more information and to see a complete list of class dates, please visit our class registration site.
Partnering with your community
Collaboration is important to us. We coordinate with your child's teachers, physicians, therapists and additional family members in order to help your child reach their goals. We also partner with the University of West Florida, CARD, Autism Pensacola, Inc., Early Steps and the local school districts.
We are an official practicum site for college students seeking clinical experience hours. We are academically focused and leading our field using the latest research and best practices for our patients. Students conduct research, connect the latest research to practice and gain hands-on feedback from experienced professionals. Individualized data is monitored regularly by our leaders, and changes and adjustments are made according to specific protocols and feedback.
For more information on services offered at the Autism Center of The Studer Family Children's Hospital at Ascension Sacred Heart or to schedule an appointment, please call our office at 850-416-7548.
All services at the Autism Center – except for behavioral consultations – require a physician referral and prior authorization from your insurance company. Please contact your child's primary care physician for a referral, and ask that they fax a referral form and script to 850-416-7776.