Breadcrumb
    MCH Research >

Funded Projects

Autism Transitions Research Project

Grantee: Drexel University
Principal Investigator: Lindsay Shea
Project Number: UT6MC45902
Project Date: 9/1/2022

Project Website

Age group(s)

  • Adolescence (12-18 years)
  • Young Adulthood (19-25 years)

Targeted/Underserved Population

  • African American
  • Hispanic/Latino
  • Special Health Care Needs

Abstract

Research focused on autistic youth transitioning into adulthood has not kept pace with the rapid growth in size, needs, or diversity of this group. Research efforts to date have been limited in scope, conducted in siloes (e.g., focused only on health care), and have not deployed a comprehensive definition of healthy life transitions that emphasizes health equity.

Goal(s) and Objectives:

The goal of the proposed project is to produce high-impact research across a diverse research team that corresponds to key areas of need to grow the evidence base to support healthy and equitable life outcomes among transition-age autistic youth and young adults. Our objectives include: (1) the production of peer-reviewed publications and National Autism Indicators Reports, (2) the development of a new intervention to support Latinx autistic transition-age youth, and (3) capacity building for equity impact within (a) Title V programs and (b) minority-serving institutions and community colleges. Proposed activities and target population(s): Our proposed project activities include: (1) the use of innovative approaches to data analysis that utilize population-level metrics to understand transition outcomes and pinpoint opportunities for improvement; (2) the development of a new intervention to support Latinx autistic youth to learn essential skills for successful transition to adulthood and healthy life outcomes; (3) capacity building for equity impact that catalyzes engagement of key institutions, program infrastructure, and policies that are prime opportunities to bolster improved healthy life outcomes among autistic transition-age youth and young adults.

Coordination:

Communication across project sites and activities will be scaffolded across four pathways. Engagement with autistic individuals and families to lead input into project goals, objectives, and activities will occur monthly. Quarterly meetings of all project sites will facilitate reporting of progress and catalyze coordination of efforts across sites to ensure efficiency and productivity. New dissemination channels will maximize the reach of Project products and extend the reach of ATRP impact by strategically aligning output and audiences. Close coordination and collaboration with HRSA to evolve activities in response to funder goals will be proactively sought, documented, and deployed to shape ATRP activity at all phases. Products: To maximize impact, we will construct products for release across multiple audiences. We propose to produce at least 25 peer-reviewed publications, which builds upon our current ATRP success. We also propose to produce at least 7 National Autism Indicators Reports aligned with key topics that have been underexplored and underdeveloped, but that are necessary for supporting healthy life outcomes and equity for autistic youth and young adults. Additional products will be catered to dissemination channels, including social media, conferences, partnerships with emerging scholars (including a Pilot Funding program), and web-based content.

Evaluation:

A multi-pronged strategy will be used to assess progress toward benchmarks at each stage of project development and execution. Strategic consultation with field-leading experts will be paired with the historical success of the research team in producing deliverables across peer-reviewed publications and National Autism Indicators Reports to generate new, innovative project activity and output. We will prioritize research questions in conjunction with advisory feedback and emerging findings to ensure that activities are responsive to the needs reported by and observed across communities.

Publications

Listed is descending order by year published.

Anderson KA, Roux AM, Rast JE, Garfield T, Shea L. Low-income households of children with autism and the economic safety net. Acad Pediatr. Published online November 4, 2023. doi:10.1016/j.acap.2023.11.001

Carey ME, Tao S, Koffer Miller KH, et al. Association Between Medicaid Waivers and Medicaid Disenrollment Among Autistic Adolescents During the Transition to Adulthood [published correction appears in JAMA Netw Open. 2023 May 1;6(5):e2315445]. JAMA Netw Open. 2023;6(3):e232768. Published 2023 Mar 1. doi:10.1001/jamanetworkopen.2023.2768

Hotez E, Hudson S. Expanding on "Screening, Diagnosis, and Intervention for Autism: Experiences of Black and Multiracial Families Seeking Care" to Support BIPOC Autistic Postsecondary Students. J Autism Dev Disord. 2023;53(9):3717-3721. doi:10.1007/s10803-023-06001-x

Rast JE, Fernandes SJ, Schott W, Shea LL. Disparities by Race and Ethnicity in Inpatient Hospitalizations Among Autistic Adults [published online ahead of print, 2023 Feb 9]. J Autism Dev Disord. 2023;10.1007/s10803-023-05911-0. doi:10.1007/s10803-023-05911-0

Roux AM, Miller KK, Tao S, et al. Unrealized Cross-System Opportunities to Improve Employment and Employment-Related Services Among Autistic Individuals [published online ahead of print, 2023 Aug 1]. Milbank Q. 2023;10.1111/1468-0009.12666. doi:10.1111/1468-0009.12666

Roux AM, Voltaire S, Steinberg H, Williams E-D, Anderson KA, Hutson TM, Shea LL. More Than Just a Variable: The Need to Explicitly Focus on Black Youth Within Autism Transitions Research. Autism in Adulthood. Ahead of Print. Published [insert publication date]. doi:10.1089/aut.2023.0041.

Shea L, Chvasta K, Hotez E. New Data, Persistent Barriers: Transition Plans are Common but Miss the Mark for Many Autistic Youth. J Adolesc Health. 2023;73(2):217-218. doi:10.1016/j.jadohealth.2023.05.003

Song W, Salzer MS, Kaplan K, Wong MY, Uppal D, Shea LL. Short Report on Effectiveness of an Autistic-Delivered Peer Support Program: Preliminary Results [published online ahead of print, 2023 Aug 9]. Community Ment Health J. 2023;10.1007/s10597-023-01174-2. doi:10.1007/s10597-023-01174-2

Song W, Salzer MS, Kaplan K, Wong MY, Uppal D, Shea LL. Short Report on Effectiveness of an Autistic-Delivered Peer Support Program: Preliminary Results [published online ahead of print, 2023 Aug 9]. Community Ment Health J. 2023;10.1007/s10597-023-01174-2. doi:10.1007/s10597-023-01174-2

Anderson KA, Hemmeter J, Wittenburg D, et al. National and state trends in autistic adult supplemental security income awardees: 2005-2019. J Autism Dev Disord. 2022;52(8):3547-3559. doi:10.1007/s10803-021-05215-1

Knauss D. Access, Empowerment, and Independence: Employment for All. Posit Approaches J. 2022;11(3)

Roux AM, Shea LL, Steinberg H, et al. Evidence from the Autism Transitions Research Project (2017-2022): Capstone review and services research recommendations. Autism Res. 2023;16(3):480-496. doi:10.1002/aur.2890


<< Previous Next >>