Michigan's project aims to improve the identification and service delivery for young children with ASD/DD. A gap analysis conducted by Michigan shows that developmental screening occurs for less than half of all children. The analysis also indicated that the number of specialized diagnosticians and diagnostic clinics is insufficient and not accessible by all families. The project will address these needs by developing and implementing trainings for providers and families, increasing public awareness of ASD/DD, and building working relationships among community-based providers and medical practices. This work will be enhanced by a strong evaluation component.
Led by the Michigan Department of Community Health, team partners include the ASD Program/BHDDA, University of Michigan Child Health and Evaluation Research Unit, Family Center for Youth with Special Health Care Needs, American Academy of Pediatrics Michigan Chapter, and Michigan Public Health Institute.
To improve identification, evaluation, and treatment of young children with ASD/DD, training will be provided to all staff in 24 medical homes for each year of the grant cycle. Trained medical homes will consistently administer validated screening instruments to identify developmental delays and autism spectrum disorders according to AAP guidelines. Additionally, the Michigan team will train families; community-based parent advocacy organizations; local community mental health agencies; local public health departments; local Department of Human Services offices; and many others.
Improving Partnerships with Families
Family members of children with ASD/DD will be seated on the Project Advisory Council to partner in all project planning, implementation, and evaluation. Additionally, family members will be identified in each of the select medical homes (see below) to serve as project advisors in the local community. A family needs assessment will be completed in each medical home to determine the level of support families of young children with ASD/DD will require supporting their roles in the family/professional partnership.
To increase families’ access to medical homes, six select medical homes will be identified each grant year from the practices that received training in screening. These medical homes will receive more in depth training and technical assistance to enhance their capabilities to work with children with ASD/DD and their families.
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