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IUP-ASERT Collaborate Publishes on Educational Materials in “Journal of Autism Developmental Disorders”

Development and Evaluation of Educational Materials for Pre-hospital and Emergency Department Personnel on the Care of Patients with Autism Spectrum Disorder,” by members of the IUP-ASERT Collaborative, was published in the Journal of Autism Developmental Disorders.

The article published the finding from the development of training materials for use with emergency department personnel when assisting patients with autism spectrum disorders (ASD) and was developed by members of the IUP-ASERT Collaborative: Joann Migyanka, Susan Glor-Scheib, and Jeff Fratangeli from IUP as well as Arvind Venkat of the West Penn Allegheny Health System, John McGonigle and Ryan Cramer of the Western Region ASERT Collaborative, and Gajanan Hegde and Jennifer Shang of the University of Pittsburgh.  

Their research has shown that with the rising prevalence of patients with ASD, there has been an increase in the acute presentation of these individuals to the general health care system. Emergency medical services and emergency department personnel commonly address the health care needs of patients with ASD at times of crisis. Unfortunately, there is little education provided to front-line emergency medical technicians, paramedics, and emergency nurses on the characteristics of ASD and how these characteristics can create challenges for individuals with ASD and their health care providers in the pre-hospital and emergency department settings. This paper describes the development of educational materials on ASD and the results of training of emergency medical services and emergency department personnel.

The project was funded through a grant from the Bureau of Autism Services, Department of Public Welfare, Commonwealth of Pennsylvania to the Western Regional Autism Services, Education, Resources, Training (ASERT) Collaborative at the Western Psychiatric Institute and Clinic of UPMC. 

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