Systems of Care
Training in ASD
New Hampshire Council on Autism Spectrum Disorders
Putting the Pieces Together in the Granite State
Information for Service Providers
are being studied carefully to discern which have the greatest likelihood of success. In medicine, education, and therapeutic intervention, utilizing an evidence-based approach is not only a best practice, but a requirement within payment structures, administrative law, and professional ethics.
One of the most challenging aspects of ASD is the coordination of care. Because services cut across so many different systems, providers must collaborate with a wide range of other professionals. Since it is in the very nature of the disorder to have a strong preference for consistency, supports and interventions must be delivered in the same way throughout a child's day. Everyone on the team must share an understanding of the child's goals and how progress toward those goals is to be achieved and measured. This places a premium on appreciating the perspective and strengths that practitioners from other fields bring, and on finding efficient ways to share data and insights.
ASD is also thought to be unique among developmental disabilities in the level of stress experienced by parent caregivers. According to a 2007 article in Pediatrics, parents of children with autism were more likely to score in the high aggravation range (55%) than parents of children with developmental problems other than autism (44%), parents of children with special health care needs without developmental problems (12%), and parents of children without special health care needs (11%). This is thought to be caused by a number of factors, including challenges in obtaining appropriate services. Case managers in many different service sectors may find themselves wondering how best to help parents access all available resources.
Information & Resources for Providers
Whether you are a direct support professional, a physician, a therapist, a case manager, a classroom teacher or a law officer, you have met individuals with ASD in your line of work. In fact, you've probably met many. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 1 in 88 children have been identified with an ASD. Autism is a familiar topic in the media, in public policy circles, and even in your own town or neighborhood. In the first ever hearing of its kind, the US House Committee on Foreign Affairs termed autism a growing and global public health crisis in May, 2011.
If you work specifically in the field of Autism or Developmental Services, you know how complex the issues are. Researchers in both basic and applied sciences are discovering new information about the nature of autism every few weeks. Increasingly, these insights are being marshaled to create innovative treatments for autistic symptoms, and these approaches
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For all these reasons, the editors have chosen to include information about eligibility and other issues related to each of the five systems of care. We then turn to highlighting opportunities in New Hampshire, New England, and online for training and leadership development in ASD. Finally, we provide links to resources to help you guide the families with whom you work.