Improving Care and Service Delivery for Autistic Youths Transitioning to Adulthood
Approximately 100 000 autistic youths turn 18 each year, a rough approximation for the number entering adulthood. Population outcomes among autistic young adults are poor across indicators of physical health, mental health, employment, postsecondary education, community participation, independence, financial security, and access to needed community services. There is little evidence that we have moved the needle on these population-level outcomes over the past 15 years, despite growing attention to the needs of this group and an outpouring of investment in the development of patient-level clinical interventions. The focus on developing evidence-based treatments has not yet been matched by a corresponding investment in implementing interventions at a scale that can reach this growing population or in systems-level strategies for improving policy and program performance.