FRESNO, Calif. (KFSN) --A revolutionary treatment for autism is showing promise for children around the world. It was all started by a mother who was searching for a way to reach her autistic children.
As the clinical director of the California Autism Center and Learning Group in Fresno, Dr. Amanda Adams looks for promising ways to treat children with the disorder.
Speech therapy is one of the center's services but the therapists could soon get help with a new system of videos, created by a mother of seven Laura Kasbar. "My twins were diagnosed with autism and they did not respond to therapy," said Laura Kasbar, founder of Gemiini System.
Desperate to find a treatment for her children, Kasbar used a method called discreet video modeling, to create the Gemiini System. The secret is in the simplicity of showing words and associations allowing autistic children to focus on learning.
Kasbar traveled from her headquarters in Spokane Washington to talk to Action news about the program. "Gemiini brings the child out of themselves and actually appears to be restructuring the neurology in their brain," said Kasbar.
Laura showed an example of how her once non-verbal son began to communicate. Prior to the video program her son, Max, was unresponsive when his name was called. After the program, Max is seen clearly communicating and interacting with others.
Dr. Adams supports the Gemiini System. "It's a tool that should be in your toolbox of many other things combined. So along with good behavior intervention, a good school program and all of the other pieces still in play, this tool I see as a supplement."
Dr. Heather O'Shea, with autism therapy provider, ACES, which has a Fresno office, says Gemiini shows real results. "We're very excited about it. We are starting to implement it, the research is giving me great hope."
Even after an early diagnosis of autism, many parents have to wait for the referral process or insurance coverage approval to start services for their children. But Laura Kasbar says with the Gemini System, parents don't have to wait to start the videos right at home. The videos are accessible on the company's website, and can cost as little as a dollar per hour of therapy.
Laura's autistic twins are now thriving in college, and she hopes Gemiini can help many more children become successful learners. "If we can treat all these things especially when they're young, and have them disappear, or lessen considerably, that would be such a gift to humanity."
The founder of the Gemini System is working with health care providers to get the system covered by medical insurance. She says the therapy is also showing success with stroke survivors, people with dementia, and those with traumatic brain injury -- or any other condition in which speech therapy is needed.