Attention and Learning Difficulties Unit

Attention and Learning Difficulties Unit

Mind Area


What do we do?

The Blue Healthcare Attention and Learning Difficulties Unit has a global approach to patient health by identifying the medical, psychological, family and social factors that influence emotional, attention and learning difficulties, as well as behavioural problems that occur in children and adolescents.

How do we do it?

It is a multiprofessional unit that comprehensively addresses childhood and adolescent disorders, and is based on an interdisciplinary model involving psychology, pharmacology, family and education:

  • Medical/psychiatric diagnosis.
  • Psychometric diagnosis.
  • Additional tests if necessary: analysis, imaging tests, genetic tests.
  • Full report on diagnosis, skills and difficulties, guidance for parents and treatment.
  • Recommendations/psychopharmacological treatment if required.
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Services portfolio: A programme for each individual

The customised action protocol begins with an initial diagnostic assessment of clinical, behavioral, personality and family aspects, as well as social and academic aspects. From the initial assessment, we individually allocate the different therapeutic programmes and devices available to the patient.

Once a complete diagnosis of difficulties and skills has been made, the following will be offered, depending on the case:

  • Guidance for parents on how to bring up children with difficulties.
  • Parent Training Workshops. Parental Coaching.
  • Psychopedagogical intervention.
  • Coordination with educational resources.
  • Cognitive Behavioural Psychotherapy
  • Outpatient individual and group treatment.
  • Life skills training.
  • Neurocognitive training to improve learning and attention.
  • Training courses for teachers in behaviour management techniques.
Individual and group treatment of learning disorders and problems
  • Learning problems (reading, writing, calculation) and poor performance
  • Anxiety, hyperactivity and lack of attention
  • School problems
  • Developmental delay
Life skills training

These training workshops are aimed at facilitating group learning of skills and abilities considered relevant to successfully face the demands and challenges of life.

Neurocognitive training to improve learning and attention

In combination with potential psychological and pharmacological treatment, we develop neuropsychological training workshops for the rehabilitation and improvement of basic cognitive functions involved in the learning processes:

  • Attention: sustained, selective and divided
  • Immediate memory and working memory
  • Execution speed
  • Reading, writing and calculation
  • Language
  • Gnosis and praxis
  • Executive functions: organisation, planning, sequencing, synthesis
Training Courses for Professionals

Specialised courses aimed at improving the knowledge and strategies of teachers, psychologists, doctors, educators, social workers, instructors, caregivers and professionals who work with children and adolescents.


Unit manager

Dr Mara Parellada

Psychiatrist, university specialist in Child and Adolescent Psychiatry (Institute of Psychiatry in London). Doctor of Medicine (European Doctorate).

Assistant Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the Complutense University of Madrid. Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry at the University of California, San Francisco (UCSF) since July 2015.

Professor in the Child and Adolescent Psychiatry Department of the Gregorio Marañón University Hospital since 2000. Creator and coordinator of AMITEA, a comprehensive health care service for ASD in the Community of Madrid, declared to be a Good Care Practice by the Ministry of Health and the Complex Diagnostic Unit in 2016. Co-creator of the website for familiarisation with the healthcare environment of patients with ASD. Awarded the Health Prize 2018 by Sanitaria 2000 in the Medicine category. Award from the Asperger Association of Madrid and from the Autism Federation of Madrid for her work promoting medical care for ASD.

Principal researcher for autism characteristics at the HGUGM since 2007, focusing on the neurobiology of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD), autism-psychosis overlap, searching for biomarkers, new therapeutic targets and improving care for autism. Researcher at CIBERSAM (Center for Biomedical Research in Mental Health Network).

Areas of clinical specialisation: Neurodevelopmental disorders, Autism Diagnosis and Autism Spectrum Disorders, ADHD, adolescent pathology. Diagnosis. Crisis intervention. Psychopharmacology. Guidance for parents. Supportive psychotherapy.

Multiple scientific articles in international journals:

Av. de Alberto de Alcocer, 5, Ground floor
28036 Madrid - Spain

Tel: +34 919 991 160

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