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New guidelines for assessing developmental disabilities in kids

Diagnosing intellectual and developmental disabilities continues to change as technological and scientific advances are made. With these advancements, the guidelines surrounding assessment must also be adjusted. A recent article on highlights the potential changes that may come about as a result of a clinical report published by the American Academy of Pediatrics.

Specifically, advances in genetic testing have enabled doctors to obtain a better diagnosis of children with delays. For instance, in cases where a delay has been identified in a child but the cause is not determined, doctors are encouraged to work with a geneticist to conduct chromosomal microarray testing that may detect genetic abnormalities that could reveal the actual cause of the delay.

The American Academy of Pediatrics believes that it is important to indentify the root cause of a particular delay so that an appropriate treatment plan may be developed. This also helps families in managing expectations as the child grows up.

This new report exemplifies a doctor’s responsibilities in asking the right questions, following up on diagnoses and connecting patients and their families with specialists, including special education and developmental services as needed. All of which are examples of the reasonable care a doctor must take in treating such patients.

Nevertheless, while the new guidelines are recommendations at this point, it is reasonable to believe that over time these guidelines will garner enough recognition to be determined an actual standard of care when treating children who have intellectual or developmental disabilities.

If you have questions about medical malpractice cases based on not properly addressing disabilities, an experienced attorney can help. 

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