The Mobile Developmental Outreach Clinic
Dr. Sivapalan provides an overview of the development and impact of the Mobile Developmental Outreach Clinic (M-DOC). The M-DOC initiative provided community-based point of care autism screening to low-income, racially diverse urban populations. The project provided an access point for families that may otherwise have had difficulties getting on a path to diagnosis and intervention. Dr. Sivapalan will examine how the M-DOC pathway ensured that children from culturally and linguistically diverse families accessed early developmental screening and interventions, and how such initiatives may be the future for autism screening in underserved communities.
A family doctor by profession, Dr. Sivapalan believes in the potential for change to the current diagnostic landscape for children with Autism. After six years of a busy and fruitful family practice, Dr. Sivapalan left his practice to help facilitate this change. With an interest in child development, Dr. Sivapalan has worked collaboratively with multiple stakeholders to design the M-DOC, a unique developmental screening initiative whose goal was to increase access to diagnosis and intervention support for newcomer communities. In addition, Dr. Sivapalan helped develop the CARES initiative, which employed a task-shifting model to provide mental health support for caregivers and siblings of children with autism. As a social doer, Dr. Sivapalan has initiated and managed various social impact projects both at the local and global level. Most recently, Dr. Sivapalan became the chief operating officer for “The Dunya Project”, a Canadian agri-tech start-up that is building a connected, climate-controlled modular hydroponic habitat to alleviate the devastating gap in access to affordable foods irrespective of climate conditions.