Autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) are severe developmental conditions that require specialised intervention and lifelong support.
Recent increases in ASD prevalence have prompted new initiatives in Western Australia to improve the consistency of assessments and to more accurately monitor diagnostic trends within the population.
WA has implemented statewide guidelines for the assessment of ASDs, has developed an open forum for clinicians to discuss issues relating to the assessment process, and supports a statewide register of newly diagnosed cases.
These initiatives have led to improved consistency across assessments, allowed analysis of diagnoses over time, and promoted cohesiveness among autism assessors.
These strategies potentially provide an alternative model for other states and territories that wish to strengthen and assimilate ASD assessments.
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