There has been an increase in utilization of the Emergency Department (ED) in individuals with autism spectrum disorder (ASD) which may reflect a deficit of services (Green et al., Journal of the American Academy of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry 40(3):325–332, 2001; Gurney et al., Archives of Pediatric and Adolescent Medicine 160:825–830, 2006; Leichtman et al., American Journal of Orthopsyhciatry 72(2):227–235, 2001). The current study examined the rates of ED utilization between 2005 and 2013 in ASD youth 12- to 21-years-old. Adolescents with ASD accessed ED services four times as often as adolescents without ASD. Older adolescents and those living in rural areas showed a significant increase in ED visits over time. Post hoc analysis revealed increased ED utilization for females and behavioral health ED services over time. Better access to and greater understanding of services for adolescents with ASD is a critical need.
All Science Journal Classification (ASJC) codes
- Developmental and Educational Psychology