State Spotlight: Delaware

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Delaware is a small state with only three counties. In Delaware, many families do not receive timely and effective care, although recent statewide planning activities, capacity building, and legislative action has created a foundation through which an efficient, effective and coordinated system can thrive.

Grantee Team

The grant team is led by The University of Delaware. Partners include Birth to Three (Part C), Delaware Department of Education (Part B), Nemours/A.I. duPont Hospital, Autism Delaware, Delaware Department of Public Health/Maternal & Child Health Bureau; Delaware Family Voices; families of children with ASD; and a multitude of stakeholders on the Interagency Committee for Autism. .

Project Activities

The “Building Bridges: Improving Access to Timely and Effective Services for Children with ASD/DD and Their Families” project will create an innovative model that improves the delivery of screening, evaluation and intervention services for children with ASD/DD and their families, through enhancement and new linkages to families and between existing programs. The plan aims to enhance current initiatives, bridge identified gaps, and connect key community stakeholders in order to create a seamless system that values family involvement, promotes evidence-based practices, and provides coordinated services reimbursable by insurance.
Project goals include:
  1. Create a shared resource for both parents and providers to access family navigation and care coordination;
  2. Increase the number of children receiving timely and effective screening, evaluation and early intervention for ASD statewide and, specifically, among a targeted underserved rural population;
  3. Increase knowledge, skill and self-efficacy among families impacted by ASD; and
  4. Facilitate the implementation of the Delaware State Plan.
Examples of planned activities include:
  • Shared Resource: The University of Delaware will create a shared resource center called the “Autism Care Team” (ACT) that will be housed in Autism Delaware. ACT will be the hub for family navigation and case management services targeting primary care practices, early childhood providers and families of children at-risk for or diagnosed with ASD. The development, refinement and coordination of services provided by the ACT will be directly informed by families to ensure that it not only provides effective care coordination but also empowers families and supports their needs.
  • Family Navigator: In addition to establishing the ACT, Autism DE will implement the Promotoras de Salud model and identify a full-time bi-lingual Spanish speaking family navigator to support more communities. They will also expand parent trainings and develop protocols for Family Navigators and care coordination depending on the level of family need.
  • Telemedicine/Telehealth: Pilot sites will be selected to offer services (e.g. evaluation and family navigation) through telemedicine and telehealth based on Delaware-specific systems. Based on the pilot results, materials and enhanced trainings will be disseminated to providers and families statewide.

For more information:


To view Delaware’s past ASD/DD grantee profile (2011-2013), click here.

To access more of Delaware's resources through SPHARC's search engine, click here