The Northern Centre for Child Development is an independent private psychology practice in Preston. We work with families, children and schools.

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About us


Amanda Abel Member (MAPS)

AMANDA ABEL

PAEDIATRIC PSYCHOLOGIST, CLINICAL ASSOCIATE OF SWINBURNE UNIVERSITY, FOUNDER

Amanda Abel, psychologist, has over fourteen years’ experience working with families and has a special interest in paediatrics, autism spectrum disorders, developmental delays, learning difficulties, disabilities and behaviour management. She has worked in a variety of settings in both the public and private sectors which has allowed her to gain extensive experience helping a wide range of clients.

While working as an Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA therapy) therapist during her tertiary studies, Amanda developed a particular interest in early intervention for children with autism, developmental delays, disabilities and challenging behaviours. Amanda’s honours thesis investigated the social skills, friendship expectations and attention of high functioning children with autism, and this was presented in 2004 at the 3rd Autism Spectrum Disorder Research Forum, Melbourne.

After her own experience becoming a mother, Amanda undertook the Circle of Security Parenting® (COS-P) training and is now a registered COS-P parent educator. She has now combined her knowledge of behaviour modification with the attachment principles from the COS-P program to provide families with practical strategies that are sensitive and responsive to their child’s emotional needs.

Dr Daniel Golshevsky

DR DANIEL GOLSHEVSKY

GENERAL PAEDIATRICIAN

Dr Daniel Golshevsky specialises in children’s acute and chronic medical conditions from birth to 18 years, with particular interests in neuro-developmental problems, autism spectrum disorder, newborns and unsettled babies, toileting problems, as well as sleep and behaviour issues. Daniel works as part of the multi-disciplinary autism assessment team at Monash Children's Hospital. Practicing holistic care with a family-centred approach, he believes that every child needs a management plan that is tailored to them, within their psycho-social environment. Daniel also has a strong interest in the media and its positive and negative effects on children’s health, recently publishing on the effects of screen time on sleep and weight in children. Known in the media as Dr Golly, he appears regularly on Channel Seven’s Good Friday Appeal as well as other television and print features.

Daniel is an experienced General Paediatrician, who trained at The University of Melbourne and The Royal Children's Hospital (RCH). Daniel has worked at RCH since 2009 and has three young children of his own. He is the former Chief Resident Medical Officer of RCH and is involved in the creation and maintenance of the RCH Clinical Practice Guidelines, an online paediatric resource used internationally. He is also a regular expert reviewer for the Raising Children Network website.

Yasotha V Member (MAPS)

YASOTHA V

CHILD / ADOLESCENT PSYCHOLOGIST

Yasotha is a registered Psychologist with the Australian Health Practitioner Regulation Agency (AHPRA) and a member of the Australian Psychological Society. She completed her Master of Educational Psychology at the University of Melbourne and has over ten years’ experience working with children with special needs and their families. She has practiced internationally (Singapore) and in Australia in both government and private settings gathering extensive knowledge and experience while working with families as well as educational professionals in schools supporting children with special needs.

Yasotha has a keen interest in assessment and intervention for children and adolescents with autism and its related challenges (e.g. social communication, social skills, anxiety, emotional resilience etc). She was trained in the use of the gold standard of diagnostic assessment tools for autism (the ADOS and ADI-R) by the University of Cambridge, U.K. She is also trained in the Secret Agent Society Program, an evidence based intervention program to help children crack the code of emotions and friendships, which she incorporates in her work with children and adolescents. Yasotha also supports Provisional Psychologists in her area of expertise and is currently a Lecturer in the Master of Educational Psychology program, at the University of Melbourne.

Matt Staios

MATT STAIOS

CONSULTANT PSYCHOLOGIST

Matt is an experienced psychologist, with specialised training in the field of clinical neuropsychology. Matt’s duties at the Northern Centre for Child Development involve conducting paediatric neuropsychological assessments within a wide range of clinical presentations (including ADHD, Specific Learning Disorders and Intellectual Disability), providing feedback and psycho-education to parents/teachers regarding the best way to support those with a specific diagnosis.

Further to these duties, Matt provides forensic paediatric psychological assessment services and treatment plans to metropolitan and rural legal practices and governmental agencies throughout Victoria. These services include the assessment of child physical and sexual abuse, assessing levels of parental capacity and risk, and providing expert testimony in court.

Matt has a strong research background and works from an evidence based scientist practitioner approach. He is currently completing his PhD in clinical neuropsychology at Monash University, where he also holds a position as a teaching associate.

Services


Applied Behaviour Analysis (ABA)

We have extensive experience providing ABA supervision and therapy—an evidence-based early intervention treatment for children with an Autism Spectrum Disorder. Our ABA options are flexible, affordable and family-friendly.

Two hours fortnightly or monthly depending on the amount of therapy your child is receiving. Your child's program will be updated and you and your therapists will be provided with ongoing training during supervision meetings. ABA programs can be created for use at home and/or school/kinder.

Counselling and behaviour management for children

We provide individualised counselling and therapy for children of varying developmental levels. Common issues we treat are sleep problems, anxiety, negative thinking, challenging behaviours and emotional regulation. We also work with parents and teachers to provide strategies and support to manage these difficulties at home, kinder or school.

Available in the office to address a range of childhood difficulties including social skills, anxiety, behavioural difficulties etc.

We provide individualised intervention at school, kinder or childcare to target social skills, behaviour, academics etc. We are able to attend school meetings to assist with planning, or meet with teachers to provide strategies for your child. Behavioural intervention programs can be created for school or kinder to be implemented by school staff.

Counselling for parents

We provide evidence-based approaches to help increase your confidence as a parent. We also provide a counselling service if you’re feeling overwhelmed for any reason, or if you would like help coming to terms with the diagnosis of your child.

To address a range of issues such as coming to terms with and understanding the diagnosis of your child, parenting difficulties and relationship issues. Sessions are held in the office and can be attended by one or both parents.

Amanda Abel is a registered Circle of Security parent educator. The Circle of Security is a relationship based early intervention program designed to enhance attachment security between parents and children.

Fees & funding


Our fees are significantly less than the rate recommended by the Australian Psychological Society to ensure our services are accessible. Most services are charged at $190 per hour and Medicare or health fund rebates may apply for services provided by fully registered psychologists.

Better Access to Mental Health Care Initiative

Medicare rebates are available to people living with mental health difficulties including (but not limited to) anxiety, depression, ADHD, conduct disorder, bereavement disorders, obsessive-compulsive disorder, or sleep problems. You must be referred by a GP, psychiatrist or paediatrician. You’ll need to book a long appointment with your GP who will determine your eligibility and prepare a Mental Health Care Plan if you are eligible.

Helping Children with Autism Initiative

We are a registered provider with FaHCSIA under the Helping Children with Autism initiative. This entitles families of a child with an ASD up to seven years old to receive up to $12,000 for Early Intervention over a period of two years. On top of the funding, children are eligible for Medicare rebates for up to 20 sessions with a psychologist. More information about FaHCSIA can be found here.

National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS)

We work with families who self-mange their NDIS funding as well as supporting those who are just starting out with the application process. For families who don't self manage, we can help link you in with an agency to ensure you're still able to receive our services.

Assessments


We offer a range of developmental assessments for children. Contact us to determine whether an assessment is appropriate for your child and to discuss fees.

Autism diagnostic assessment

For a comprehensive assessment your child will need to meet separately with a paediatrician, speech pathologist and a psychologist who will liaise to determine whether or not your child meets the criteria for a diagnosis. ASD Assessment Information Sheet (PDF).

Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development - Third Edition

By administering the Bayley Scales we are able to identify your child’s areas of strength and weakness in the five key developmental domains of cognition, language, social-emotional, motor and adaptive behaviour.

The Vineland Adaptive Behaviour Scales - Second Edition

The Vineland is used to assess individuals aged up to 90 years. It assesses the individual’s skills in specific areas and can help with treatment planning as well as helping to identify developmental delays, cognitive disabilities, autism spectrum disorders and other impairments.

Wechsler Primary and Preschool Scales of Intelligence - Fourth Edition (WPPSI-IV Australian)

The WPPSI-IV is an assessment of your child’s cognitive functioning – what some people might refer to as an IQ test. The WPPSI-IV provides us with very valuable information about how your child thinks and can be essential in helping us plan the best ways to teach in order to maximise their potential.

Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule - Second Edition (ADOS-2)

The ADOS-2 is a semi-structured, standardised assessment of communication, social interaction, play/imaginative use of materials, and restricted and repetitive behaviours. It is used for individuals who have been referred because they are showing signs of possible Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD).

Psycho-Educational Profile - Third Edition (PEP-3)

Administering the PEP-3 allows us to assess the skills and behaviors of children with autism and communicative disabilities with a developmental age between 6 months and 7 years. The profile resulting from the PEP-3 graphically charts uneven and idiosyncratic development, emerging skills, and autistic behavioral characteristics.

Wechsler Intelligence Scale for Children - Fourth Edition Australian Standardised Edition (WISC-IV Australian)

The WISC-IV is used to assess the general thinking and reasoning skills of children aged 6 years to 16 years. Test results include a full-scale IQ score as well as age-equivalent rankings and scores for verbal comprehension, perceptual reasoning, working memory and processing speed.

New Reynell Developmental Language Scales (NRDLS)

The Reynell is a widely-used assessment for identifying speech and language delays and impairments in very young children.

Get in touch


Address

155 Plenty Road,
Preston, Victoria, 3072.

Contact Us

P: 03 9079 8043
M: 0498 648 515

Business Info.

ABN: 37 404 549 366
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