And his book was written in order to make the point that early intervention is not the answer to autism, that there are other ways of dealing with the problem, and these strategies do not need to wait until the crisis is over to be effective.

The authorities in the areas knew that they could have prevented the outbreak, but did not do so. And, the hospitals, hospitals that provide care for a wide range of people including people in mental health crises who are so fragile that they risk suicide, the psychiatric health centers that care for people in need of psychiatric care, who have to hide their symptoms. Why wasn’t the community alerted at this critical moment?

It is not an issue that can be ignored. The health care providers had a responsibility and a duty to monitor the situation carefully.

This is an issue that can be ignored because most people think that they can just assume care in any community if they are suffering from a mental health crisis. In a way, this is exactly how the government allowed this to happen. People think, “If they need to deal with these people, so what? I’ll be able to handle it.”

Instead, this is a crisis that needs to be addressed. This is a crisis that needs to be communicated, especially to individuals who may have been affected by the crisis and still want access to their own healthcare. This is a crisis that needs to be provided through the health care system who must have the capacity to respond (especially if someone cannot speak a language of their own country) and the resources to provide care.

In this case the response did not go far enough. As we know from the recent, even deadly, hospital outbreaks, the situation can be handled in a relatively short time, and the media, in these countries, is not overly interested in reporting or documenting these events. The situation could have been handled with a fraction of the funding, to say nothing about the resources to respond. It would have been far easier to do so, given the very limited resources available to the country.

This is not an issue that can be ignored. The health care providers had a responsibility and a duty to monitor the situation carefully. It is not an issue that needs to be ignored because most people assume that they can just assume care in any community if they are suffering from a mental health crisis. In a way, this is exactly how the government allowed this to happen. People think, “If they need to deal with these people, so what? I’ll be able to handle it.” This is not an issue that can be ignored. The health care providers had a responsibility and a duty to monitor the situation carefully. It is not an issue that needs to be ignored because most people think that they can just assume care in any community if they are suffering from a mental health crisis. In a way this is exactly how the government allowed this to happen. People think, “If they need to deal with these people, so what? I’ll be able to handle it.”

In this case the response has taken a rather long time, and has clearly not done something to help. The treatment and treatment plans are there. What is needed, however, is for the health care system to acknowledge the situation. What is the treatment plan for these individuals? What should the local officials have done differently to prevent this?

My colleague, Dr. Alan Cooperman, is very well known for his work on autism in the general population, particularly in the context of early intervention. In the past three years, Dr. Cooperman has written the best known book about autism in kids. It is important to note that the current trend of focusing more and more on early diagnosis and early intervention has been the wrong approach to a crisis situation. Dr. Cooperman argues (and I agree) that when a problem is not addressed by early diagnosis, the problem is likely to only grow worse. And his book was written in order to make the point that early intervention is not the answer to autism, that there are other ways of dealing with the problem, and these strategies do not need to wait until the crisis is over to be effective. As Dr. Cooperman demonstrates this is not necessarily a case of “they didn’t know, they were not alerted.” When this is proven to be the case, then the first action is to raise awareness.

Dr. Alan Cooperman is a professor in the Department of Developmental Psychology at the University of Amsterdam. He has worked on a number of issues that have been relevant to the care of people with autism, including children, adolescents and adults: diagnosis, therapy and screening. His work on pediatric autism in children will be soon published in the American Journal of Developmental Psychology. His book is The Antipsychotics: A Child-Friendly Introduction to Antipsychotics for Children and Adolescents.

He is also a clinical assistant professor in the department of developmental psychology at the University of Amsterdam and a member of a working group on autism and mental health.

Here is Dr. Coop

As the nurse in the longterm care facility, I was more concerned for my health than for the child in the home with the flu, and I didn't want those risks to affect my baby. And then there is still the fact that no one should feel guilty when their kids learn that they can't use a health product in a dangerous fashion and, they're also putting themselves or, more importantly, young adults and the rest of our whole population at risk.
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