In a New Zealand first, post-natal nurses are being taught to diagnose autism which is being hailed as a major breakthrough in the treatment of affected children.
A specialist nurse has been flown in from Australia by Autism New Zealand and Plunket in a joint effort with Victoria University, will help in up-skilling our own nurses to help treat those children affected.
Research from Australia suggests that early detection, may be the best strategy in helping those affected, a statement backed up by Autism New Zealand's Dane Dougal.
"All the research suggests the earlier we can detect autism, the earlier we can help with intervention, the better chance that child goes on to live ot their full potential whatever that may be," he told 1 NEWS.
Sixty nurses from the lower North Island took part in today's course with Australian psychologist Josephine Barbaro, who's hopeful of seeing treatment of autism becoming part of the norm in New Zealand.
"If we can make it as part of routine practice, then it will be something that all children will have access to, regardless of their background or situations," she said.
Autism New Zealand are now looking for the funding to expand their training to a nation-wide effort.