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MDT Services

The Sunflower Clinic has established a very experienced multi-disciplinary team (MDT) to provide an assessment and diagnostic service for children with suspected Autism Spectrum Disorder.

The MDT brings different therapeutic disciplines (Occupational Therapy, Speech and Language Therapy and Psychology) together to provide an international best practice standard for the assessment and diagnosis of Autism.

The Sunflower Clinic MDT has established a clinically recognised Assessment and Diagnostic pathway designed to provide a validated diagnosis of Autism.

What is Autism? – Click Here

Diagnostic Pathway – Click Here

Julie O’Sullivan BSc. Occupational Therapy, MSc. Sensory Integration, MAOTI

Head Occupational Therapist, Clinical Manager

Julie is the head Occupational Therapist and founder of The Sunflower Clinic with over 25 years experience in paediatrics.  Julie has completed her Masters in Sensory Integration,  is an Advanced Practitioner in Sensory Integration and has extensive experience of working with children with ASD in the UK and Ireland.  Whilst in the UK, Julie helped to set up a private – parent-led project “The Bridge Group” to provide therapeutic services for childern with ASD.  Julie is trained in the ADOS-2, ADI-R and the Bayley Scales of Infant and Toddler Development assessment tools, which are specific standardised tools used in the assessment and diagnosis of Autism.  Julie also started the first summer camps specifically for children on the ASD sepctrum, again using an MDT model.  Julie has also led the team in providing Occupational Therapy services for ASD groups including the HSE, The Brothers of Charity, Enable Ireland, Hope Montessori Autism Care Centre and several ASD units attached to primary and secondary schools in Munster and Leinster.

Elaine Hourihane B.A. Applied Psychology, H. Dip. Ed. (Primary), M.A. Ed. Psych.

Elaine graduated from UCC with a degree in Applied Psychology and then went on to complete her H.Dip and Masters in Educational Psychology at Mary Immaculate College, Limerick.  Elaine has worked as a primary school substitute teacher, a Learning Support and Resource Teacher for a school in Cork and now works part time for a Cork charity as part of a multi-disciplinary team dealing with children with a range of developmental needs including those on the ASD spectrum.  Elaine has completed the training for the ASD-specific assessments ADOS-2, ADI-R and also the Griffths Mental developmental scales.

Aileen O’Brien – Senior Speech and Language Therapist

Aileen is a Senior Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist who has recently joined the Sunflower Clinic team. Since graduating from University College Cork in 2009, she has worked in a variety of paediatric settings including preschools, schools, private practice and disability services in Ireland and Australia.  Aileen has extensive experience helping children develop their language and social interaction skills, and is passionate about doing so using naturalistic, relationship-based approaches such as DIR Floortime therapy in her work. She has undergone training in the ‘Hanen – More Than Words’ language program, Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS), and the SOS (Sequential Oral Sensory) Approach to Feeding.

Aileen is also trained in ‘1 2 3 Magic and Emotional Coaching’, an approach which provides parents with strategies they can use to encourage positive behaviour as well as manage challenging behaviour.  Aileen has completed the ADOS-2 training programme in TCD and has over  6 years’ experience of working with children on the ASD spectrum.  Aileen feels strongly about working with families and empowering parents to best understand their child’s development, so that they can feel confident about how to help their child at home.

Yvonne Carey – Senior Speech and Language Therapist

Yvonne is a Senior Paediatric Speech and Language Therapist who graduated from City University, London in 2013, where she was awarded an MSc in Speech and Language Therapy with distinction. She is passionate about working with children and their families and has a broad range of experience working in a variety of paediatric settings, including clinics, nurseries and mainstream schools as well as a special school for children and young people with Autism and a resource base for Deaf pre-school children. She specialises in working with the Early Years population of under 6’s with a variety of speech and language disorders and other communication difficulties as well as working with children in the specialist clinical areas of Autism, Hearing Impairment and Deafness. Additionally qualified and experienced as a secondary school teacher, she has also worked with older children with additional needs in mainstream school settings.

Yvonne has completed training in the Family Partnership Model, the Parent-Child Interaction Therapy approach, Picture Exchange Communication System (PECS), Gina Davies Attention Autism Programme, The SCERTS Model (Social Communication, Emotional Regulation and Transactional Supports) widely implemented for children with ASD.  She has trained in sign systems including British Sign Language and Lamh Module 1.  She is also trained to administer the ADOS diagnostic for Autism for children as part of a multi-disciplinary team. Yvonne is committed to empowering families and maximising the potential of every child.

Juanita O’Reagan, BSc. Occupational Therapy
Senior Occupational Therapist

Juanita graduated from the University of Witwatersrand in South Africa in 2006 with a Bsc (Hon) O.T.   She has over 10 years’ experience working in the field of Paediatrics and has worked for a number of services including private practice, Child and Adolescent Mental Health Services and CoAction. While in CoAction, Juanita was employed as the Head of Service for the Occupational Therapy Department. As part of her clinical role she worked as a member of the Progressive Disability team in Clonakilty and provided an OT service for children presenting with complex developmental needs.  Additionally, she was involved in caseload management, service management, risk assessment and supervision of Basic Grade therapists. Juanita has a keen interest in continuing professional development and has undergone training in Sensory Integration, visual perception, SOS feeding, DIR floortime and ABLE training for relation based brief interventions. Juanita has a special interest in providing early intervention for children presenting with complex developmental needs and has extensive experience in this area. Juanita works Tuesday-Thursday 7:30- 18:00 in the Cork Clinic.

Emma Healy- Senior Paediatric Occupational Therapist

Emma graduated from UCC in 2013 with an Honours Degree in Occupational Therapy. Emma has worked for a number of healthcare services, where she gained valuable experience assessing and managing busy caseloads. She has also volunteered as an Occupational Therapist in orphanages in Belarus, working with children with a variety of different needs, including Cerebral Palsy, Down Syndrome and ASD. Emma completed the Handwriting Without Tears training course, which is implemented in our handwriting groups.  Since joining The Sunflower Clinic in January 2017, Emma has completed Sensory Integration: Module 1, as well as ADOS-2 training and now works as part of our multidisciplinary team, assessing for ASD. Emma has a special interest in working with younger children and ran a popular Get Ready for School summer camp in August 2018.  Emma is also involved in the leading and organising of Social Skills groups and ASD Summer Camps within the clinic.

Dr Anthony Webster – Chartered Clinical Psychologist

Tony has over 10 years clinical experience of working with children and adolescents with a range of needs and is a highly respected member of our team.  Tony is based in our Rathcoole, Co. Dublin clinic but is available for consultation in the need arises.  Tony works with an existing HSE Multidisciplinary team based in Co. Meath and brings a wealth of experience and knowledge to support the clinical efficacy of our MDT.

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