An app is allowing families of those with autism to search for care based on their child’s needs.
Lamarque Polvado’s daughter Ashlynn was diagnosed with autism when she was 5.
"I knew nothing about Autism. I knew nothing about the condition. I knew nothing about resources that may or may not help Ashlynn,” Polvado said.
At the time Polvado was operating a convention services business, and said his daughter being diagnosed was one of the most impersonal experiences of his life. The doctor entered the room, he said, handed them a sheet of paper with info on Autism and walked out.
"A piece of paper with a lot of grim stats saying to prepare for the worst was not helpful," he said. "This is my daughter. There's no eject button. She's mine and my responsibility and I have to help her find points of care that help her achieve the best she can be.”
Polvado changed careers. Over 10 years, he and his wife learned everything they could about autism and the types of care available for families. He said he felt compelled to share information with others going through the same process, and created CareStarter.
"I kind of made this agreement that I would build this technology that would empower people to access treatment, but in their own unique way," he said.
CareStarter is a free app that allows families to create a profile for their children and search for care based on their individual needs.
Polvado said the goal is to connect families to the large number of resources that do exist, but might have been hard to locate without his software.
Go here to learn more about CareStarter.