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Virginia Mom Praises Virtual Clinic for Autism Evaluations, Says Son Is ‘Progressing in Leaps and Bounds’ After Autism Diagnosis

Manassas, VA– When Kaila Hawthorne’s son, Xavier, was 18 months old, she knew he likely had autism. Since Kaila has 5 children, she’s in tune with the developmental milestones to look out for as well as the early signs of autism. But she didn’t know how difficult it would be to get an appointment for an autism evaluation in her area, which is 30 miles from a major metropolitan area, Washington, D.C. 

“I’ve had my son on a waitlist since he was 2 years old. His doctor said that maybe he has autism and sent us to a clinic where there was a year-long waitlist. Then, they also sent me to three other places. All had waitlists over a year out. I decided to send him to occupational therapy and speech therapy while we were waiting,” she said.

Then Kaila’s grandmother called. Her grandma saw a segment on the TODAY Show about a mother who was going through the very same problem, stuck waiting for an autism evaluation. The mother on national news found a solution using a virtual clinic for autism evaluations called As You Are. 

“I told her, ‘Oh I don’t know, a virtual doc? How are they going to do this? I was skeptical,” she said.

But grandma persistently told her to try it out for Xavier, who is now 3 years old. In the meantime, her insurance wasn’t going to continue paying for speech or occupational therapy until Xavier had a diagnosis. Kaila decided to schedule an evaluation with As You Are, and within 3 weeks, had an official autism diagnosis for Xavier.

“My grandma kept pushing so I read through all of the testimonials and I was like, ‘Okay, these literally sound like me. They were waiting forever and now their kids are getting help, so I decided to give it a try. It was so thorough and they took all of my information down. The doctor I worked with was so sweet, too,” she said.

Now, just 6 months after receiving a diagnosis from As You Are, insurance is already covering therapies for Xavier and Kaila says he is thriving.

“Since he got a diagnosis, he is now able to get into a preschool program and get ABA. He’s nonverbal, but able to communicate even more. He’s actually talking now. All of this progress since June,” she said. “He’s progressing in leaps and bounds.”

She also highlighted that she’s had no problem utilizing the diagnosis from As You Are for Xavier’s services.

“That’s been easy peasy. I gave the therapy clinics the report and I’m good to go. I’ve given it to 4 different places and have had no problems with it being submitted as a formal diagnosis,” she said.

Kaila is grateful for her experience through As You Are and grateful for her grandma.

She said, “My grandma jokes every day and says, ‘Aren’t you glad I watched the TODAY show that day?”


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