Children with autism benefit from research collaboration

10 May 2016
China-Aus collaboration

A research collaboration between Kids Reaserch Institute, The Children's Hospital at Westmead and Guangzhou Rehabilitation and Research Centre for Children with Autism/ Guangzhou Cana School for Children with Autism (Cana School) was sealed with the signing of a Memorandum of Understanding. The organisastions will work together for the first time to support children with autism.

 The Department of Psychological Medicine at The Children’s Hospital at Westmead has  developed Emotion Based Social Skills Training (EBSST) to enhance the mental health and well-being of these children.  Research has demonstrated EBSST improves emotional competence and mental health for children with autism and that improvements are sustained 6 months after completing the program.  There are different versions of EBSST for children of different ages and abilities.Training and certification is provided for practitioners to deliver EBSST in private therapy clinics, schools, and outpatient hospital settings.

Cana School aims to translate the EBSST materials into Mandarin and evaluate its effectiveness in a large scale study, with the goal of implementing the program in schools throughout China.

Guangzhou Rehabilitation  and Research Centre for Children with Autism/ Guangzhou Cana School  for Children with Autism (Cana School), is the first Chinese government research centre and one of only two schools for children with autism in China. Dr Fan, Director and Founder of Cana School, and a pre-eminant paediatrician in autism in China and Dan Huang, Head of Research, Cana School, are visiting  The Children’s Hospital at Westmead.

“This is the first opportunity for China and Australia to work together to support children with autism,” said Dr Michelle Wong, who led the development of EBBST. “We are delighted to have two representatives from Cana School to visit the Hospital and to celebrate our Research Collaboration Project.

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