Disclaimer: This list of services is based on my own experiences. It's not intended to be comprehensive but to give parents an idea to go. Please let me know if any of them are no longer helpful.Facing a diagnosis of autism can be frightening but that piece of paper opens up a huge world of help for you, your child and your family. Unfortunately, there are lengthly delays in the publicly funded options for diagnosis but there are a number of private options for those who can afford them.
My first recommendation would be to speak to your family doctor to see if he or she has a particular recommendation. A psychologist or a developmental pediatrician can do the assessment to see if your child qualifies for the diagnosis. Your family doctor will also be able to refer you to the Ottawa Children's Treatment Centre, which does the publicly funded diagnosis.
Ottawa Children's Treatment Centre (OCTC):
These people are your new best friends once you suspect something is going on with your child. There is a fair amount of complaining on the parent groups about them but they offer support without costing the families anything but time. Even if you are getting a private diagnosis, you should register with them. We received help from a social worker, who helped us apply for grants and programs; Infant Development Workers, who came to our home to offer support and suggestions; access to their specialized playgroups, which were a gold mine of parent support and help. I'll always be grateful for their assistance.
These are two groups which I know specialize in developmental psychological assessments. However, there is a large number of psychologists in the Ottawa area. Your family doctor may know someone who is closer or who can see you sooner than the people I've listed below.
Disclaimer, I work for Emerging Minds, so I'm biased. But I do think they are one of the best options available for private diagnosis here in Ottawa. You can call them at 613-883-3716 to book appointments.
Fundamentals: Child Behaviour Solutions
Dr. Jenny DeMark does assessments for children under 12. You can contact her at 613-222-5098.