Samirah AlGhamdi

Head of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Dvision
Saudi Psychiatry Association

Dr. Samirah is the executive director of National program of Developmental & Behavioral Disorders- Ministry of Health from 2018 to present. She is a representative of ministry of Health (MOH) in permanent committee of Human Rights commission for preparing the reports and following up from 2018 to present. She is a child, adolescent and adult consultant psychiatrist, Anxiety disorders and Cognitive Behavior Therapist (CBT), a Program Director of Child and adolescent psychiatry fellowship from 2017 to present.

Dr. Samirah is the founder and Director of volunteer committee “Child Supporting Group” under the umbrella of non-profit organization (the national Committee for supporting mental health), from Jan 2014 to present and the Head of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry division at the Saudi Psychiatry Association (SPA) from 2013 to present.



Short Description of the Lectures:

1. Recognizing and Preventing Abuse in Children with ASD
Traumatic childhood events are associated with a wide range of negative physical, psychological and adaptive outcomes over the life course and are one of the few identifiable causes of psychiatric illness. Children with disabilities are at heightened risk for maltreatment (Maclean et al., 2017; Spencer et al., 2005; Sullivan & Knutson, 2000), a significant public health problem referring to experiences of abuse physical, sexual, or emotional) and/or neglect that are associated with deleterious outcomes across the lifespan (Cicchetti & Valentino, 2006). The Effects of autism on children’s physical and mental development can be serious, causing a great burden to children, parents and society. The Characteristics of children with autism, e.g. social isolation and poor communication skills, might either increase their risk of being abused or be a clinical indication of abuse (Howlin & Clements,1995). For children with ASD, maltreatment was associated with a higher likelihood of hyperactivity, aggression, and temper tantrums. This is consistent with prior research documenting that children with ASD who have experienced abuse may have heightened disruptive behaviors (Howlin & Clements, 1995) and difficulties similar to those of typically developing maltreated children (Brenner et al., 2018).