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Psychiatric Crisis among Youth and Transition Age Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder
The current proposal is a request to assemble a focus group comprised of multidisciplinary clinicians (e.g., psychiatrists, psychologists, social workers) both within and outside the Kennedy Krieger Institute (KKI).
The goal of the group will be to discuss and develop two measures. The first is a parent report, the Psychiatric Crisis Assessment Schedule or PCAS, that examines the prevalence and characteristics of psychiatric crisis in youth and transition-age youth with autism spectrum disorder (ASD). The second is a clinician report, the ASD Management Survey, that will probe psychiatrists comfort level in managing individuals with ASD, particularly those in crisis, as well as their general knowledge of ASD.
Following the initial development of these measures 10-25 parents of children with ASD and 10-25 clinicians will pilot their respective measures to assess quality.
These data will help develop early screening tools to prevent crises in high-risk individuals, as well as customized response interventions to manage individuals with ASD who are actively in crises. On a larger scale, the findings will be influential in promoting policy and health care changes that will enhance the quality of, and access to, medical (and psychiatric) care for individuals with ASD and improve the health and outcomes of adults with ASD from a lifetime perspective.
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