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Research Program in Autism Services

The Research Program in Autism Services investigates the delivery of care to individuals with autism spectrum disorders and their families to try to help improve the systems that serve them. Active projects in this program area are listed here (click on each project title for more information).

Autism Services, Education, Resources and Training (ASERT) Collaborative

Director of ASERT Collaborative Eastern Region: Lindsay Shea (AJ Drexel Autism Institute - Drexel University)
Funder: Pennsylvania Department of Public Welfare, Bureau of Autism Services

Autism Institute researchers collaborate on the Eastern Regional site of the Autism Services, Education, Resources and Training (ASERT) Collaborative. Along with partners in the western (University of Pittsburgh) and central (Penn State University) regions of the state, the Autism Institute is leading a broad portfolio of projects primarily aimed at improving the lives of adolescents and adults with autism spectrum disorders and their families. Please click here to learn more about the ASERT collaborative and the projects that are currently ongoing. Click here to read the Pennsylvania Autism Census Project and the Pennsylvania Autism Needs Assessment Reports.

Evaluation of the Autism Navigator for Early Intervention Providers

Principal Investigator: Craig Newschaffer
Funder: Public Health Fund, an affiliate of the Public Health Management Corporation

The Autism Institute is working with Pennsylvania Early Intervention Technical Assistance to evaluate the rollout of a new online training program for providers of early intervention services to young children with developmental delays and/or autism spectrum disorders. Please click here to learn more about Autism Navigator and click here to learn more about the Early Intervention system in Pennsylvania, including how to request an evaluation for your child. 

Study of Health Outcomes in Children with Autism and their Families

Project Director: Taylor Dennen (The Lewin Group)
Contract #HHSN-271-2010-00033-C
Dates of contract: September 20, 2010 - December 31, 2012
Funder: National Institute of Mental Health

This project uses an extremely large private health insurance administrative database to study the health care utilization and health outcome experience of children living with autism spectrum disorders and their families.  Another goal of the project is to inform appropriate methods for using administrative data in studies of autism spectrum disorder risk factors. Publications and presentations related this project can be found below.

Publications