Primary medical care for children with autism needs improvement

Armen Hareyan's picture
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Autism and Children

Children with autism do not receive the same quality of primary care as children with other special health care needs, according to research from the University of Minnesota Medical School.

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A study published in the Archives of Pediatrics and Adolescent Medicine found that parents of children with autism were less likely to report that their children received the type of primary care advocated by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) when compared to parents of children with other special health care needs. The "medical home model," which is defined by the AAP as accessible, continuous, comprehensive, family-centered, compassionate, culturally effective, and coordinated with specialized services was used as a measure for ideal primary care of children.

"This study shows that children with autism are less likely to receive the type of primary medical care that we hope for all children," says principal investigator Allison Brachlow, M.D., research fellow at the Department of Pediatrics. "With increasing numbers of children diagnosed with autism, it is imperative to understand how to provide optimal care for these children."

Specifically, Brachlow found that parents of children with autism were less likely to report their child

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