A 3-year study assessed the performance of training, research, and state systems grant programs in meeting the objectives of the Combating Autism Act Initiative. The study measured results of the grantees' efforts to increase awareness of Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and other Developmental Disabilities (DD); reduce barriers to screening and diagnosis; support research on evidence-based interventions for ASD and other DD; promote the development of evidence-based guidelines and tools for interventions; train professionals to use valid and reliable screening and diagnostic tools and provide evidence-based interventions for ASD and other DD; and create systems-level improvements at the state level that would improve access to comprehensive coordinated health care and related services for children with ASD and other DD.
The study found increases in the number of children receiving diagnostic evaluations over the course of the grant period, thereby providing an early indication of progress toward reducing barriers to services. Grantee programs also expanded their training resources and assisted local agencies and practices in building their capacity to provide community-based services. To promote early screening, diagnostic evaluation, and intervention the grantees engaged in various strategies aimed at building awareness of autism spectrum disorder among providers, parents, and the public. The grantees also conducted studies on the efficacy of interventions, developed consensus-based guidelines to support medical professionals treating children with the disorder, and developed guidelines to support evidence-based clinical decision making and toolkits to support clinicians and parents in identifying and treating the medical and behavioral issues that commonly occur in children.
Report Title: Efforts to Improve Autism Spectrum Disorders Service Delivery under the Combating Autism Act Initiative: Research, Training, and State Implementation Grants for Fiscal Year(s) 2008-2011
Agency Sponsor: HRSA, Health Resources and Services Administration
Federal Contact: Deidre Washington-Jones, 301-443-6844
Performer: Insight Policy Research
Record ID: 9728 (September 30, 2013)