Center for Adoptive Families
Families that are created via adoption– whether international or domestic– have unique neurodevelopmental needs. Concerns about development, learning, and emotional well-being require the expertise of a specialty clinic in which there is multi-disciplinary collaboration. In addition, since the needs of adoptive families will change over time, access to comprehensive long-term follow-up is essential.
Because we at ICCD take pride in providing comprehensive, integrated care, we are excited about broadening our services by joining with the Center for Adoptive Families to provide both pre-adoptive counseling and ongoing medical/ developmental follow-up.
From its founding by Laurie Miller, MD, at Tufts Medical Center in 1987, the Center for Adoptive Families has always used a multidisciplinary approach. Over the past ten years, Linda Tirella, OTD, has worked side-by-side with Dr Miller to care for many hundreds of families, and we are fortunate that she will bring her expertise in developmental assessment to ICCD. Medical evaluation will be provided by Sarah Barnett, MD, MPH: though she is the newest member of the team, she brings her experience as a neurodevelopmental pediatrician, her training in neonatal neurology, and her own understanding of the adoption process as the mother of two teenagers born abroad.
Pre-adoptive consultation helps families to prepare for medical and developmental issues which may arise at the time of the child’s arrival or later in life. Among the more common issues are growth and nutrition; potential in utero exposure to alcohol or other drugs; and infectious diseases from HIV and syphilis to tuberculosis and parasites. Parents often say that the knowledge and support that they receive prior to accepting an adoption referral makes for an easier transition for the entire family.
Ongoing medical and developmental follow-up is equally important for the adoptive family, particularly if there are delays in motor and language development, or if behavioral challenges arise; or if learning difficulties occur. Following placement, the multidisciplinary approach which includes both medical evaluation and developmental assessment is invaluable in creating an appropriate treatment plan and monitoring progress. The Center for Adoptive Families is excited to join ICCD and to continue to offer our adoptive families the services they need as they approach and move through the adoption process. Please contact our intake coordinator at 781-619-1580