Our Philosophy

We believe that parents know their child best. We are here to advocate for them and provide     

a care centred around their child's need.

 

 Comprehensive and timely support can make all the difference. We take pride in offering a diagnostic and management service for Autism and other conditions in a timely manner.

All our assessments are based on gold standard and NICE (National Institute of Clinical Excellence) guidelines. We follow DSM 5 (Diagnostic and Statistical Manual 5th revision) criteria to ensure standardised assessment of all conditions.

 

Based on extensive experience we are able to provide early diagnosis, interventions, robust strategies as well as signpost parents to the right support for their child. 

In addition to face to face consultation, we offer the flexibility to book online appointments for initial parental consultation and some specific assessments. The online consultation is prearranged with families at a time to suit their needs and schedule.

Our professional support will be there for as long as you need it.

Meet our team

The right professionals to support your child

At Autism doctor we work with hand picked professionals who are skilled in their areas of expertise. We choose the right professional to match your child's needs

Dr Deepshikha Thakur

Founder and Clinical Director

Experience:

Dr Deepshikha (Deepa) Thakur has a vast and varied paediatric experience spanning over 22 years. ​Her special interest is in Autism Spectrum Disorder particularly Autism in girls and teenagers as well as complex Autism. 

In addition, she is an expert in assessment and management of Attention Deficit Hyperactivity Disorder (ADHD), Dyspraxia, Developmental Delay and other aspects of Neurodisability and Developmental Paediatrics.

She holds key leadership roles within the NHS in relation to Autism and SEND as Autism Lead and Designated Medical Officer (DMO) in Hertfordshire Community NHS Trust and a board member of NHS England, East of England ASD and Learning Disability Board.

She has been involved in the capacity of chief investigator in a  feasibility Research Trial using a robot (KASPAR) to improve joint attention, imitation and turn taking in children on Autism Spectrum.  She has presented in international and national conferences over the years including at the prestigious RCPCH.  She is a co-author of the Autism chapter in the Trainees Handbook published by Jay Pee Brothers.

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Ms. Roberta Mackay
Highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist
Ms. Katy Bridgewood
Highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist
Dr.  Ruth Rogers
Speech and Language Therapist & Chartered Child and Educational Psychologist
Dr. Kirsty Saunders
Associate Specialist Community Paediatrician
Ms. Maria Hadi
Highly Specialist Speech And Language Therapist
Dr. Vicki Wolfe
Chartered Child & Educational Psychologist
Beverley Werner
Highly Specialist Children’s Occupational Therapist
Dr. Lindsey Edwards
Clinical Psychologist ​
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Dr Ruth Rogers

Highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist & Chartered Child and Educational Psychologist

Experience:

Dr. Ruth Rogers has extensive experience in assessing and providing intervention for 0-25 year olds since she first qualified as a Speech and Language Therapist in 2001.  Her work has involved assessing and delivering intervention for children with Autism Spectrum Disorder, ADHD, Developmental Language Disorder (DLD), Developmental Verbal Dyspraxia, Stammering, and Speech and Language Disorders/Delays. Her expertise lies in differential diagnosis of complex cases, identifying strengths and needs,  providing evidence-based interventions and supporting schools and families to enable children and young people to make progress.

Dr. Ruth Rogers has worked for the NHS and Local Authorities. She has experience across a range of community clinics, mainstream schools, special schools and speech and language bases across Hertfordshire, Harrow, Hillingdon,  Buckinghamshire and Essex.  In her Education Psychologist role, she has delivered Autism Education Trust Training to school staff across Hertfordshire to upskill schools in providing Autism friendly environments and support children with Autism effectively.  She has a special interest in the impact of different types of Special Educational Needs, particularly Autism, ADHD and DLD on mental health.

Dr. Ruth Rogers is an expert in Autism. She is trained in the gold-standard assessments of ADOS-2 and 3DI.  She supports educational settings and parents with SCERTS. SCERTS is an evidence-based framework to support children and young people with Autism in the areas of Social Communication and Emotional Regulation using Transactional Supports (strategies.)  She is also able to provide individualised packages of support according to children’s individual needs.

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Ms. Katy Bridgewood

 

Highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

Experience:

Having qualified in 2006 from Reading University, Katy has extensive experience supporting children with a wide range of speech, language, communication and feeding difficulties, aged 0-19 years.

She has worked in a variety of settings including hospitals, homes, clinics, mainstream schools, pre-school SEN settings, and primary/secondary special schools. Katy has worked within the NHS, in education, and independently.

Katy has a special interest in early language and communication development; and pre-school/school age children with special educational needs (including autism, cerebral palsy, down syndrome, other genetic/neurological conditions, and developmental delay). She uses a variety of approaches within sessions including Parent-Child interaction (PCI), Makaton and Alternative Augmentative Communication systems (AAC), including PECS.

Building rapport with children and their families is something that Katy prides herself on. She ensures the experience is positive and child-centred; and carers/staff have a better understanding of how to support and meet the children's needs going forward.

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Ms. Roberta Mackey

Highly Specialist Speech and Language Therapist

Experience:

Since graduating with a BSc Hons from Birmingham City University in 2010, Roberta has gained extensive experience. She works with CYP, aged 0-19 years with a variety of communication difficulties and complex needs including, Autistic Spectrum Disorder, Down Syndrome, Cerebral Palsy, Developmental Delay and Paediatric Dysphagia (eating and drinking difficulties). She is also a certified Makaton tutor.

Roberta believes in collaborative working. She works hard to build trust and rapport to establish meaningful and supportive relationships with the children and families she works with, as well as educational staff. She provides knowledge and training on how best to support and develop their children’s communicative skills and/or eating and drinking skills, in all environments.

Roberta works in a variety of settings, the home environment, schools and nurseries as well as clinics and hospitals. She uses different approaches to support communication such as Parent-Child Interaction, Makaton, Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS) and more.

She has supported parents through applying for and gaining educational health care plans and liaising with the wider multi-disciplinary team, if required.

Roberta offers a friendly, holistic and approachable service and is extremely passionate about empowering and educating parents, caregivers and professionals to enable children to reach their full potential.

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Dr. Kirsty Saunders

Associate Specialist Community Paediatrician

Experience: 
Dr Kirsty Saunders has an over 35 years paediatric experience in  different parts of the world including New Zealand, Kenya and the UK. For the past 26 years she worked in Hertfordshire as an Associate Specialist in Community Paediatrics, with expertise in autism, ADHD, dyspraxia and developmental paediatrics. She was Medical Adviser for Adoption and Fostering for the Hertfordshire County Council Adoption Agency for 22 years, with expertise in attachment difficulties and the impact of trauma. She has a special interest in Foetal Alcohol Syndrome Disorder and children with attachment difficulties and neurodevelopmental problems, especially autism. 

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 Dr. Vicki Wolfe

 

Chartered Child & Educational Psychologist

Experience:

Dr Vicki Wolfe has a range of experience in supporting children and their families from birth through to age 25. She has experience working privately, within Local Authorities in London and the Home Counties, and in special school provisions across Hertfordshire.


Vicki has a special interest in supporting children and families affected by Autism in their school setting and at home, providing evidence-based support strategies and consultation to work through challenges.

Vicki is passionate about helping schools to be inclusive and supportive of all of their pupils, and she has delivered a number of training programmes and support packages to schools including: ‘Celebrating Neurodiversity’, ‘Developing a socially-inclusive school ethos’, ‘Strategies to support students with sensory processing sensitivities’, and ‘Looking after pupil & staff wellbeing’. 

Vicki is also passionate about research, and she has presented her findings at the Association of Educational Psychologists (AEP) & International School Psychology Association (ISPA) annual conferences.  She is also published in the areas of staff supervision and teacher wellbeing, and parental engagement with schools.

 

Vicki takes a systemic approach to her work, working collaboratively with the school and family systems supporting the child, to ensure that the child is always kept at the heart of the work.
 

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Dr. Lindsey Edwards

Clinical Psychologist

Experience:

Lindsey completed her BSc in Psychology, her research doctorate and clinical psychology training at University College London. She has more than 25 years experience working with children and families, 21 of those at Great Ormond Street Hospital for Children.

 

At Great Ormond Street Hospital Lindsey led a team of clinical psychologists working across a variety of paediatric specialities including audiology and cochlear implant, cleft lip and palate, craniofacial disorders, ENT, maxillo-facial disorders, orthopaedics and spinal surgery, plastics and dental surgery.  

 

Lindsey's primary interest and expertise is in assessing the cognitive abilities of children and adolescents who are experiencing difficulties in their learning and/or speech and language development, often in the context of broader communication difficulties. This may be the result of temporary or permanent hearing loss, speech and language disorders, auditory processing disorder or a range of medical conditions and syndromes, and neurodevelopmental disorders such as autism or ADHD. She conducts comprehensive psychometric assessments for children aged 2 to 18 years, specialising in the assessment of non-verbal cognitive abilities, and the cognitive abilities of children with limited or no spoken language skills. She also looks at the child’s behavioural and emotional strengths and difficulties, and how these impact on learning and progress in school, to provide a comprehensive picture of the chid's needs and inform interventions. 

Lindsey is active in research and teaching, and has published numerous scientific papers, book chapters and co-authored a book on deaf children with complex needs.

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Maria Hadi


Highly Specialist Speech And Language Therapist

Experience:

Maria has over 10 years of experience working with young people aged 0-19, providing assessments and therapy in a variety of settings such as Child Developmental Centres, Hospitals, educational settings and client's home.

She has worked with young people with a range of speech, language and communication difficulties, including Autism Spectrum Disorder, cerebral palsy, Downs Syndrome, Developmental Language Disorder, acquired brain injury, Developmental Delay, stammering, Paediatric Dysphagia and Complex needs.

As part of her experience working in educational and acute clinical settings she has created multidisciplinary care pathways to educate staff and parents/careers as well as to provide evidence based therapeutic interventions with clear outcomes for the young person and their family. 

Through her independent work she focus on differential diagnosis and Social Communication Disorders, supporting families to understand their child’s strengths as well as their needs. 
 

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Beverley Werner 


Highly Specialist Children’s Occupational Therapist 

Experience:

Having qualified as an Occupational Therapist in 1998 from the University of Witwatersrand (South Africa) she moved to the UK and has worked here since 1999. She has held a number of roles, within the NHS, including community and clinic based paediatric occupational therapy services. Highlights include being the lead therapist for the Developmental Coordination Disorder Clinic, the lead therapist within the Special Schools Team and leading the Children’s Occupational Therapy Rheumatology clinic at Northwick Park Hospital. She left the NHS in 2014 to work for a charity (Playskill), supporting children with physical disabilities, alongside starting her independent private practice. 

Having over 20 years’ experience, Beverley strives to help support children, young people and their families to develop optimal functional skills. She has expertise in using a wide variety of assessment and treatment tools. She has trained in a variety of approaches including: Sensory Integration assessment, Bobath Therapy and the Cognitive Orientation to daily Occupational Performance (CO-OP) approach. 

She has a strong interest in working with children with Developmental Coordination Disorder (DCD)/Dyspraxia, Sensory Processing Disorder (SPD), Autistic Spectrum Disorder (ASD), Hypermobility as well as Cerebral Palsy and other neurological/developmental disorders. 
 
Beverley prides herself on her caring approach, building strong, friendly rapport with children, young people and their families.  Beverley believes that teamwork is vital to ensure the child or young person reaches their full potential, placing strong emphasis on liaison with all professionals within the multidisciplinary team. 

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Opening Hours

Mon – Fri 17.00 – 20.00

Saturday 09.00 – 13.00

Sunday 09.00 – 10.00

Contact Details

Location

Autism Doctor

Neurodevelopmental Services Private Limited 

Spire Bushey Hospital

Heathbourne Road

Bushey

Hertfordshire, WD23 1RD

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