Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder


Event type Conference

Coin Street Conference Centre, 108 Stamford Street, London, SEI 9NH

Our conference on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders aims to raise awareness and understanding of fetal alcohol spectrum disorders (FASD) and provide an overview of how individuals and families affected by FASD can be supported. Listen to Dr. Jennifer Shields & Dr. Sarah Brown discuss FASD in this podcast.

Key takeaways

  • To raise awareness of the prevalence, key features and outcomes of individuals affected by Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (FASD)
  • To understand the key components of an FASD assessment, including taking alcohol history and developing a profile of strengths and difficulties
  • To gain an overview of what interventions and approaches can benefit individuals and families affected by FASD
  • To understand more about the lived experience from those affected by FASD
  • To be able to consider wider implications from prevention to intervention: a whole system approach to responding to FASD.


Dr. Jennifer Shields
Dr. Jennifer Shields

Principal Clinical Psychologist for the Scottish Government Fetal Alcohol Advisory and Support Team (FAAST) based in NHS Ayrshire and Arran. Principal Educator for Autism (NHS Education Scotland)

Following two years working for the West Dunbartonshire Acquired Brain Injury Service, Dr. Shields completed her Doctorate in Clinical Psychology at the University of Glasgow. Alongside her clinical post within the Child & Adolescent Mental Health Service in North Ayrshire, she also completed a Post Graduate Diploma in Paediatric Clinical Neuropsychology at University College London. Dr. Shields has a longstanding interest in neurodevelopmental conditions and acquired brain injury. She was a member of the working group for the SIGN Guideline for Autism (145) and is currently a member of the working group for the SIGN Guideline for FASD.

Dr. Raja Mukherjee
Dr. Raja Mukherjee

Adult Learning Disability Consultant Psychiatrist for Surrey and Border’s Partnership NHS Foundation Trust

Dr. Mukherjee started the first NHS based specialist Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders behavioural clinic and since then has seen over 150 cases for specialist second opinion. He completed his PhD on the subject of Fetal Alcohol Syndrome in 2014. He has also acted as an invited advisor to the BMA board of science, The Department of Health and the World Health Organisation on the subject of FASD. Dr Mukherjee also gave evidence to the first All Party Parlimentary Group on FASD at the House of commons. Dr. Mukherjee is also Clinical lead for adult Autism Services for SABP provides diagnostic services to Surrey, Hampshire and Portsmouth.

Dr. Sarah Brown
Dr. Sarah Brown

Consultant Paediatrician, Rainbow House Child Development Centre, NHS Ayrshire & Arran

Dr Brown has longstanding interests in advocating for the needs of Looked After and Accommodated Children and is the Lead Paediatrician for LAAC Health within Ayrshire. Dr Brown is the Lead Clinician for the Scottish Government Fetal Alcohol Advisory and Support Team and is committed to supporting the nationwide development of FASD services and improving clinician confidence in the diagnosis of FASD. She regularly teaches and presents at conferences on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders and is a member of the FASD SIGN Guideline Group.

Róisín Reynolds

Róisín has worked in the drug and alcohol field since the early 90s in both clinical and managerial roles. During this time she also worked as a reviewer for the Health Care Commission and has delivered the RCGP Part 1 and 2 – Working with Drug Users in primary care in venues across the North West. Róisín has also facilitated workshops at several national conferences. Her current role as Senior Advisor for Alcohol Exposed Pregnancies at the Greater Manchester Health & Social Care Partnership, is to lead on an initial 2 year ‘proof of concept’ programme to reduce alcohol exposed pregnancies and progress towards and ambition of ending new cases of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder.

Rachael Nielsen
Rachael Nielsen

Project Manager for the Greater Manchester Alcohol Exposed Pregnancies programme

This ‘proof of concept’ programme aims to reduce alcohol exposed pregnancies with the ambition to eliminate new cases of Foetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder. Before joining Greater Manchester Health and Social Care Partnership, Rachael worked in NHS drug and alcohol treatment services for 19 years in both practitioner and managerial roles. During that time Rachael led both clinical and children and families services. Rachael is committed to the hidden harm agenda and throughout her career has strived to implement and improve practices to reduce drug and alcohol related harm.

Dr. Patricia D. Jackson, OBE FRCPCH

Honorary Fellow University of Edinburgh Department of Child Life and Health

Dr. Jackson trained as a Paediatrician at Edinburgh University and specialised in neuro-developmental assessment. Her previous role in NHS Lothian was the development and organisation of Learning Disability Services for children and young people. She established, and was the Clinical Lead for, the CEN NMCN (National Care Network in Scotland for Children with Exceptional Health Care Needs). Over the past 5 years she has led the consultation process resulting in the recent launch of the Scottish Government Diagnostic Pathway for Children with FASD (Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorder). This is one of a number of Scottish Government initiatives in relation to FASD. She is co-chair of the SIGN (Scottish Intercollegiate Guideline Network) FASD Diagnosis Guideline Group.

Prof. Moira Plant

Prof. Moira Plant

Emeritus Professor of Alcohol Studies at the University of West of England in Bristol UK and Adjunct Professor at Curtin University Perth Australia

Moira’s main interests include women, alcohol and mental health, drinking in pregnancy and Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders. She has published on these and related subjects in peer reviewed journals and books. Moira is the UK lead on the Gender Alcohol and Culture: An International Project (GENACIS) which includes over 40 countries worldwide. She has acted as consultant to the World Health Organisation, the UK and other governments, the Centre for Addiction Research & Education Scotland (CARES) and is a UK consultant to the US Collaborative Initiative on Fetal Alcohol Spectrum Disorders (CIFASD). Moira is a psychotherapist and trains and supervises counsellors.

Dr. Carolyn Blackburn

Senior Research Fellow in the Faculty of Health, Education and Life Sciences at Birmingham City University

Carolyn was the Project Lead for two projects investigating the educational implications and early childhood practitioner knowledge of FASD in the UK and an advisor to the Complex Learning Difficulties and Disabilities project. She is the lead author of the first UK text on the educational needs of children and young people with FASD and co-editor of an international interdisciplinary text on FASD. Carolyn is currently writing a book on inclusive practice for early childhood professionals supporting young children with FASD. In addition she has authored and co-authored numerous articles and been an invited speaker at numerous national and international conferences in relation to FASD. Carolyn is a Board Member of the European Association on Early Childhood Intervention (Eurlyaid) and an Editorial Board Member of Infants and Young Children.