Project ECHO: Autism

Project ECHO Autism TeamJoin us in bringing autism best practices to primary care across Alabama!

Why ECHO Autism?

Autism affects one out of every 68 children in the United States. Children and adolescents with autism have difficulties with social skills and communication, and require a plethora of services and supports to help them reach their full potential. In addition:

  • 50-80% have trouble with sleep
  • 40-80% have GI issues
  • More than half have co-occurring anxiety or behavioral difficulties
  • There is a severe shortage of subspecialty providers in Alabama, and wait lists are very long
  • Parents and families need medical support in their home communities

How will ECHO Autism help me?

Through ECHO Autism, you will increase your knowledge of and self-efficacy with:

  • Evidence-based practices for screening and diagnosis of autism
  • Common medical and behavioral concerns among children with autism
  • Successful office visits for children with autism and other behavioral concerns
  • Identification of resources for children with autism and their families

You can make a big difference for families in your community!

Contact coordinator Charlene Rhoades at or 205-638-9254 to sign up!

Project ECHO: Autism Registration Form (PDF)

How to Submit a Case for ECHO: Autism:

Please complete the Case Presentation Form that best describes your case and email it to Charlene Rhoades at or fax to 205-638-5089:

Meet our Team:

  • Justin Schwartz, MD, Developmental-Behavioral Pediatrician and ECHO Autism Director
  • Sarah O’Kelley, PhD, Child Psychologist
  • Laura Barefield, MD, Child and Adolescent Psychiatrist
  • Suzanne Geerts, MS, RD, Dietitian
  • Bama Hager, PhD, Parent Expert and Program Manager, Autism Society of Alabama
  • Lizzie Griffith, LGSW, Social Worker and Coordinator, Regional Autism Network (Region 5)
  • Tracy Cron, Parent Expert


All meetings are on Fridays from 11:45 a.m–1:15 p.m.

January 19 – What is Autism?
February 2 – "While You Wait"
February 16 – Constipation
March 2 – Feeding
March 16 – Sleep
March 30 – Irritability
April 6Intro to ADHD
April 20Anxiety
May 4Special Education
May 18Resources
June 1 – Supporting Families
June 15 – Intro to Applied Behavioral Analysis (ABA)

Our Partners

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