The Autism CRC’s pioneering Australian Autism Biobank (AAB) depends on the ongoing involvement of parents for its success.
OTARC is a collection site for this study.
Part of participating in the Autism CRC AAB involves children having blood samples taken – which some parents are understandably nervous about. One way we seek to allay parent’s concerns is by asking parents to consider bringing a favourite toy or device to distract the child, or to plan for a special outing or reward afterwards. The other things we do to make the experience as positive as possible are:
- We use local provider ClinicalLabs Pathology, whose phlebotomists are experienced in collecting blood from children – both with and without a disability.
- During the collection, we have just begun to use BuzzyBee, a pain blocking and distraction device for children
- Afterwards, the child receives a small toy or other reward.
The many Victorian families who have generously agreed to participate in this historic project inspire us to improve data collection. In fact, it was a parent of one of the study participants who recommended the Buzzy Bee.
The Australian Autism Biobank, one of the defining studies of the Cooperative Research Centre for Living with Autism, was officially launched by the Hon. Sussan Ley, Minister of Health in March 2016 at Wesley Medical Research, Brisbane. It will ultimately be one of the leading repositories of biological and clinical information about autism, and will be essential to the work of researchers worldwide. The Biobank also has collection sites in WA, Qld and NSW.
If you have a child diagnosed with autism and are interested in participating in the Australian Autism Biobank, please call Melanie Muniandy at 9479 5421 or email (firstname.lastname@example.org) or visit the website .