Parent Input / Multi-Disciplinary Evaluation


Former desparate mom
What is a Multi-Disciplinary Evaluation?

A multi-disciplinary evaluation is a process whereby a team of experts in child development, each of whom specializes in a different field of medicine, examines your child on an out-patient basis.

What are the different types of specialists?

Usually, they include a psychiatrist, neurologist, neuropsychologist, speech pathologist, occupational therapist, developmental pediatrician, and an audiologist. You will need to check with the hospital carrying out the evaluation to determine the various specialists involved.

Why should I get one for my child? Where do I get one done?

The purpose of this approach is to have as many professionals examining your child at once. Collectively, they can determine a diagnosis that fits your child best and you can then begin a treatment plan that will be the most effective one for your child.

Where do I get one done?

Ideally, a children's hospital is the best place to go for this type of evaluation. Most major cities have children's hospitals, or wings within their hospital, that specialize in children's issues only. Occasionally, university hospitals will have multi-disciplinary evaluations available as well. As medical systems vary throughout the world, you will need to research how the system in your country works in providing services to children.

Usually, multi-disciplinary evaluations require referrals for this specialist service. The best place to start is with your pediatrician or general practitioner. Explain to him or her that you are having behavioral problems with your child. It is best if you can document this with a Parent Report, video, journals, etc. It may take several months to arrange a multi-disciplinary evaluation, so it is best to start the process of scheduling the appointment sooner, rather than later. Your pediatrician may even schedule the appointment for you.

If you cannot get the referral through your pediatrician, you may need to consider going privately (out of plan) to get the evaluation. This will mean that you will have to call the hospital directly and make the appointment. Doing an Internet search for children's hospitals in your area will usually provide you with links to the hospital.

by Wildflower

Parent Input and Assessment
by Jerri/updated by Wildflower

Parent Report and Assessment for [Name of Child, Date of Birth]

Prepared by:
[Name of Parents/Caregivers]

[Photo of Child]

Table of Contents:
1. Introduction to [Name of Child]
2. Family History
3. Medical History
4. Mental/Emotional History
5. Social History
6. Scholastic History
7. Assessment History
8. Interventions - Past and Present
9. Concerns - Present and Future
10. Aspirations


Do not try to write this all in one sitting. Start with one area of the document and work your way through, one item at a time.

Gather all of the assessments, reports, report cards, journals, baby books and any other support documents into one folder/box so that you have easy access to the information while writing this report.

Be mindful that the information will be part of the file/permanent record either at the doctor's office and or the school. Present the information clearly and as objectively as possible.

The inclusion of your child's photograph lends a "face to the name" and personalizes the report even further.

Introduction to [Name of Child]
Describe what your child looks like, who he/she is, what his/her likes and dislikes are. This is meant to be a positive overview of your child.
List what your child's strengths are in the home, the school, the community, and within him/herself.

Family History
Family: Start with whom your child lives with (parents, grandparents, siblings, etc.). When introducing the immediate family, indicate what their jobs are, what their interests are, any awards won, challenges they face, and what their relationship is like with your child, etc. You are trying to provide a picture of the influences in your child's life. Information about length of marriage, divorce, deaths in the family are important to address.
Pets: List the number and type of pets you have and your child's relationship to them, how your child treats them.
Values: Indicate what your family values are in relation to church, community involvement, volunteer work etc.
Concerns: If you have concerns about your home, bring them up only slightly here.

Medical History
Start with the pregnancy of your child. What complications, if any, were noted? § Describe the delivery, birth weight, and any issues of concern surrounding the birth process.
List any developmental delays.
List immunizations and any reactions noted related to them.
List any infections (example: ear), illnesses (chicken pox), injuries, broken bones, stitches, etc.
List any medications prescribed over the course of your child's life.
List any previous hospitalizations (physical/mental) your child has had.

Mental/Emotional History
List Family Medical History, in particular, any known disorders such as Bi-polar, Depression, Asperger's Syndrome, Nonverbal Learning Disorder, Attention Deficit Disorder/Attention Deficit with Hyperactivity Disorder, Dyslexia, etc.
If any assessments have been documented, note briefly what the outcome of the assessment(s) has been. There is a section devoted to Assessment History that will provide this in detail.

Social History
Describe how your child developed socially: were they eager to play with other children, how did they respond, did they have playmates, were they invited to parties, etc.
Describe any relevant social family information here as well. This would include moves to other locations, divorce, major family upsets, etc. This is the place to frame your family's social history in the light you want it viewed.
Describe any relevant information regarding interventions with police or other law enforcement.

Scholastic History
List the grade level of your child and schools attended.
Note any awards or academic achievements your child has received.
Note any difficulties your child has experienced in school (bullying, exclusion, grade failures, etc.).
If any tutors have been provided, list the subject area and duration.
If you have an Individual Education Plan (IEP), include it here.

Assessment History
Provide any assessments that have been documented.

Interventions - Past and Present
Note behavior modification plans, if they worked or not.
List all medical, dietary, natural remedies that have been utilized and note which worked and which didn't.
If therapy has been tried, list the outcome and whether or not it was of any benefit.
If you are using or have used - a methodology (such as the Riley Method, Explosive Child/Basket Method, 1-2-3 Magic, etc.) make note of it.
Mention the resources you have found and tried, or wish you could try. Things such as biofeedback, music therapy, art therapy, summer camps, etc.

Concerns - Present and Future
What is troubling you about your child's behavior at present (education, social life, spiritual life, home life, etc.)?
What are your concerns about it?
What are your worries for the future? Why?
List what your child's weaknesses are in the home, the school, the community and within him/herself.

Allow yourself to sit back and dream of the life you want with and for your child. Be as specific as possible (enjoy mealtimes, outings, etc.).
How you would like your difficult child to experience life.