ASD Prevalence Remains at 1 in 68 The estimated number of school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) did not change from the 1 in 68 reported two years ago, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Typically, the CDC releases new data on ASD incidence every two years. The 2016 report is based ... News in Brief
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News in Brief  |   June 01, 2016
ASD Prevalence Remains at 1 in 68
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Special Populations / Autism Spectrum / News in Brief
News in Brief   |   June 01, 2016
ASD Prevalence Remains at 1 in 68
The ASHA Leader, June 2016, Vol. 21, 11. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB3.21062016.11
The ASHA Leader, June 2016, Vol. 21, 11. doi:10.1044/leader.NIB3.21062016.11
The estimated number of school-aged children with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) did not change from the 1 in 68 reported two years ago, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
Typically, the CDC releases new data on ASD incidence every two years. The 2016 report is based on information collected from the health and special education (if available) records of 8-year-old children in 11 states in 2012.
According to the new data:
  • The estimated percentage of children with ASD remains high—one in 68 or 1.5 percent—but unchanged from the most recent report in 2014, which was based on 2010 data.

  • Because there were significant increases in ASD diagnoses in two communities, and because the percentage of children with ASD varies widely by community, it is unclear whether the overall percentage of children diagnosed with ASD is increasing or has stabilized.

  • For most of the children with ASD, health or education records documented concerns about development by age 3. Despite these concerns, less than half of children received a comprehensive assessment by that age, a lag that may affect age at diagnosis and start of services.

  • Despite research that shows no difference in ASD risk, black and Hispanic children are less likely to be identified with ASD. Those who are identified, however, receive comprehensive evaluations later than white children identified with ASD.

Incidence of ASD was highest in communities where both health and special education records were reviewed (as opposed to just health records), indicating that schools play a vital role in evaluating and serving children with ASD.
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June 2016
Volume 21, Issue 6