State Spotlight: Vermont


Vermont was experiencing a gradual population change with more refugees settling in one area of the state. Vermont's team consisted of the Department of Disabilities, Aging, and Independent Living and
the Vermont Department of Health.

To view Vermont's State Grantee Profile, click here.  

To learn more about Vermont's work, visit Vermont Family Network's webpage here.

Project Activities

The goals for Vermont's project were:

  • Partnerships are demonstrated between professionals and families of children and youth with ASD/DD, in the project and in all aspects of the system of care
  • Children and youth with ASD/DD have access to a high quality medical home
  • Children and youth with ASD/DD have access to adequate health insurance and financing of services needed
  • Expansion of early and continuous screening for ASD/DD by Medical Homes
  • Community-based services are organized for easy use by families
  • Transition to adult health care, work and independence is successful

The project activities are discussed below.

Family-Professional Partnerships

During the grant period, Vermont's team focused on establishing strong family-professional partnerships. In particular, the VAPAC report estimated that that families participated in at least 80% of objective in the grant work. Families are also very involved in the advisory committee. The committee was comprised of 50% of families or individuals with ASD/DD.

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Medical Home Pilot and Algorithm

Vermont's team developed an algorithm to guide primary care physicians from screening and diagnosis to chronic care management. The algorithm was disseminated to medical homes and community partners. Vermont's CSHN Medical Home pilot has expanded to four pediatric practices in conjunction with the VT Blueprint for Health Care Reform Initiative expansion.

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Online Transition Guides

Vermont's team developed transition guides for young adults, faVT Transition Guide Webpage.PNGmilies, and professionals to better educate them on ASD/DD information and related resources to aid in transitioning youths as they move to different types of care as they grow older.

To view the transition guides, visit the VT Transition Guides webpage here.

To view the Transition to Adulthood Toolkit, click here.  

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Legislative Study

Vermont facilitated a study of current resources and service models for
children with ASD and their families. The report led to insurance legislation
mandating coverage of the diagnosis and treatment of ASD by private and
Medicaid insurers.

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VCHIP Developmental Screening Practice Improvement Project

This project successfully trained 90% of the 103 primary care practices in Vermont in alignment with AAP's Bright Futures Guidelines. The project led to the "Considering Culture" conference that featured the latest neurolinguistics and cultural research on bilingual acquisition and more. A resource bibliography was created and widely disseminated at the conference. 

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Specialized Autism Program

This program provided training and coaching with evidence-based practices for teams  working with children in early intervention and early childhood special education. The program replicated the National Professional Development Center Model.

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Autism Awareness Events

Vermont's team increased the number of autism awareness events to engage families and the communities to learn about the early signs of ASD/DD and increase access and knowledge of available local resources.

Successes & Lessons Learned

Vermont accomplished many objectives during their grant period, including:

  • Expanding the CSHN Medical Home Pilot
  • Facilitating insurance legislation through developing a legislative study
  • Training 90% of primary care practices in Vermont through the VCHIP Developmental Screening Practice Improvement Project
  • Increase the use of evidence-based practices through the specialized Autism program
  • Increasing the number of Autism-related events from 11 in the first year to 22 in the second year
  • Developing online transition guides to help youth, families, and professionals have access to valuable information and resources

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