The Arizona Developmental Disabilities Surveillance Program (ADDSP) has been designated by the Arizona Department of Health Services (ADHS) as the bona fide agent for surveillance of Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD) in Arizona and has maintained this designation since 2000. ADDSP is a collaborative effort of the Division of Genetics and Developmental Pediatrics and the College of Public Health at the University of Arizona; the Arizona University Center on Disabilities, University of Arizona Program Site; the ArizonaLEND program; the Arizona Department of Education; and the ADHS. The ADDSP includes multiple sources for case-finding, using both educational and clinical records. As part of the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring (ADDM) Network, ADDSP applies the case definition standardized across network sites to provide estimates of prevalence and characteristics of children with ASD. ADDSP also provides education and training for medical and non-medical personnel to enhance their capacity to diagnose and report DD. Between 2000 and 2018, the prevalence of ASD among 8-year-olds as measured by the ADDM Network more than tripled, from 6.5 to 22.7 children per 1000.
The ADDSP surveillance area is defined by a contiguous set of census tracts wholly contained within a group of school districts in Maricopa County, Arizona; and the population under the new program will include both 8-year-old and 4-year-old children who have a parent or guardian residing within this area at any time during one of the two study years, 2022 and 2024.
The purpose of Component A of this application is to demonstrate our capacity to conduct and enhance surveillance of ASD in 4- and 8-year-old children in the same contiguous geographic area in which we have effectively and efficiently conducted surveillance since 2000. Extensive education and outreach activities will be focused on dissemination of ADDM data to stakeholders, agencies and others involved in public health policy, provision of services, and improvements in access to screening and early intervention. ADDSP will make measurable progress toward the following objectives:
OC1: Improved understanding of ASD, including trends & disparities in ASD prevalence over time and by demographic factors
OC2: Strengthened ASD surveillance among 4-year-old children
OC3: Improved understanding of differences in ASD characteristics by age through
OC4: Stronger relationships between recipient and partners/ data sources through
OC5: Increased dissemination of ADDM data
OC6: Improved reliability & efficiency of ADDM surveillance through development and systematic adherence
OC11: Improved policies & plans that address ASD research agendas & services for children with ASD