Statewide effort to provide easy access to autism services

Written by Matt Paul and Radio Pennsylvania | Jun 8, 2013 8:29 AM

(Hershey) -- A new public-private partnership seeks to provide resources and guidance to the estimated 30-thousand Pennsylvanians are living with autism. The collaborative effort will team the state Department of Public Welfare with medical centers, autism research centers and other organizations to help families and parents find the information they need.

The three primary partners are Penn State Hershey Medical Center, the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and Drexel University in Philadelphia.

Carla Craig with the Medical Center says anyone can connect with them by calling a toll free number -- 1-877-231-4244. "Resource specialists are happy to provide live assistance on any autism-related questions from parents, caregivers, individuals with autism, community members," Craig says.

The Autism Services, Education, Resources & Training -- or ASERT -- Collaborative is funded by DPW's Bureau of Autism Services. The department reports that one in every 88-children is now diagnosed with autism.

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