Carers special: The Hocking Family

Monday, May 3, 2010
The Hocking Family

Millions of Australians are disabled themselves or care for someone with a profound disability. Read the shocking stories of those left to soldier on in silence.

The Hocking family, Qld

“A diagnosis in Qld means nothing in other states”

“My little boy mother of Max, 7, has Autism Spectrum Disorder,” says his mum Tracey.

“We lived in Tom Price in WA for 6 years and that is where we discovered our little boy was different to other children. I made appointments with pediatricians only to find that we had a 10 month wait for a country autism team to come to Tom Price to test Max.

This frustrated me because everything I had read indicated that the earlier you start working with children the better their developmental prospects would be.

Armed with this information, we flew to Townsville QLD to set about achieving a diagnosis. We were successful, but upon returning to WA $8000 poorer and presenting the information to disability services we were informed that a Queensland diagnosis meant nothing in WA and that we would still have to wait.

We did wait and achieved a diagnosis nearly 12 months after the initial appointments in Queensland. A very valuable year wasted. We have recently returned to our home state of Queensland and once again this same dilemma is upon us.

Education Queensland have said that they cannot allocate my son permanent aide time because he was diagnosed in WA and the Townsville pediatrician's letter is too "dated". When does the fighting end?”

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