Having a handicap placard for your autistic child can provide peace of mind in case of a meltdown or elopement in a parking lot. Autism can make it challenging for children to regulate their emotions, and they may have difficulty processing sensory information, leading to unexpected outbursts or confusion. If a meltdown occurs while walking to or from the car, having a handicap placard can provide a designated parking space closer to the entrance, reducing the time and distance needed to get to safety. Additionally, if your child is prone to elopement, a designated parking space can provide a safer and more controlled environment for loading and unloading from the car. Remember to always prioritize safety and seek support from a medical professional or therapist if needed.
If you are concerned about the safety of your autistic child in public spaces, it is important to communicate your concerns with your child's pediatrician. They can help you identify any potential risk factors and offer support and guidance on how to keep your child safe.
One way to start this conversation is by bringing a MV-9D form with you to your next appointment and express your concerns about elopement and meltdowns in public.
Make sure reason code #2 is used by the physician on part D
(This form can be found down below or you can click the yellow highlighted link above)
Additionally, this form MUST be signed by a physician & notarized (Some physicians' offices have a in-house notary or bring it to your local UPS for notary services (be sure to call first))
By being proactive and communicating with your child's pediatrician, you can create a plan that prioritizes your child's safety and well-being while in public spaces. Remember, it's okay to ask for help and support, and your child's pediatrician is there to help you navigate any challenges that may arise.