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The Reality of Accessing Care for Autism Spectrum Disorder

Published:September 29, 2022DOI:https://doi.org/10.1016/j.pedhc.2022.08.007
      Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) is an increasingly common diagnosis worldwide. In the United States, it is estimated that about 1 in 44 children are identified with ASD (

      Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Autism and developmental disabilities monitoring (ADDM) network. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/addm.html

      ). Of those identified, boys are four times more likely to be diagnosed than girls (

      Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Autism and developmental disabilities monitoring (ADDM) network. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/addm.html

      ). Although the cause of ASD is unknown, it occurs regardless of racial, ethnic, or socioeconomic factors (

      Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Autism and developmental disabilities monitoring (ADDM) network. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/addm.html

      ). ASD is further categorized into three levels of support. ASD level 1 means that an individual “requires support,” level 2 means “requiring substantial support,” and level 3 means “requiring very substantial support” (
      • Weitlauf A.S.
      • Gotham K.O.
      • Vehorn A.C.
      • Warren Z.E.
      Brief report: DSM-5 “levels of support:” a comment on discrepant conceptualizations of severity in ASD.
      ). Although the necessity of support is identified in the diagnosis, access to support can be complicated for parents and health care providers. This factors into the social determinants of health because although support is necessary, it is not easily accessible. This increases the risk that some children with autism might not receive the support they require.
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      References

      1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2022). Autism and developmental disabilities monitoring (ADDM) network. Retrieved from https://www.cdc.gov/ncbddd/autism/addm.html

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