OLOL Children’s Hospital highlights developmental services during Autism Awareness month


In light of the growing prevalence of autism spectrum disorder, Our Lady of the Lake Children’s Hospital has continued to expand its pediatric developmental services to meet the needs of communities across Louisiana and surrounding states. The hospital’s Pediatric Development and Therapy Center, which offers a multi-disciplinary approach to the assessment and management of pediatric developmental disabilities, is the only medically based clinic in Louisiana offering both medical and therapy services in one location.

The Pediatric Development and Therapy Center, in its 17th year of practice, has grown to treat nearly 2,000 patients by physicians and more than 1,000 patients by therapists. The clinic treats patients from 48 Louisiana parishes and from Mississippi and Alabama.

“Studies show that autism is present in nearly 1 in 68 births here in the United States, and those numbers have nearly doubled in the last decade,” said Steven Felix, MD, developmental medicine specialist with the Pediatric Development and Therapy Center. “For children to have improved outcomes, we have found that early intervention is the key. If we can diagnose them at a young age and begin treatment, children have the ability to thrive with autism.”

The practice is led by Dr. Felix and Cindy Chestaro, MD. Dr. Felix is Board Certified in developmental pediatrics and along with Dr. Chestaro provides diagnosis, treatment and management of children with developmental and behavioral conditions. This includes the diagnostic evaluation, biomedical management, and family support for children with motor, communicative, sensory, developmental, genetic, neurological, learning, and behavioral disorders.

The clinic is located at 8415 Goodwood Boulevard in Baton Rouge. To find out how your child can be tested for autism spectrum disorder, visit ololchildrens.org/childdevelopment.

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