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Partners Work Together To Improve Autism Services In York

City of York Council

8:50am 30th April 2014
(Updated 10:09am 30th April 2014)

The Faculty of Health and Life Sciences at York St John University will be hosting and facilitating an ‘autism community of practice’ in partnership with the council, Leeds and York Partnership Teaching Foundation Trust and York Teaching Hospital NHS Foundation Trust.

The group will include key stakeholders who are involved in the commissioning and delivery of services to individuals with autism, enabling them to share best practice and look at ways of improving services for customers and their families.

The ‘community of practice’ is the latest in a series of initiatives in York aiming to raise the profile of autism and further improve the services available to people with autism. This includes the creation of a new joint council and NHS Autism Strategy for Adults: Fulfilling and rewarding lives for adults with Autistic Spectrum Conditions living in York, which aims to:

• Increase awareness and understanding of autism among frontline professionals.

• Develop a clear, consistent pathway for diagnosis in every area, which is followed by the offer of a personalised needs assessment.

• Improve access for adults with autism to the services and support they need to live independently within the community.

• Help adults with autism into work.

• Enable local partners to plan and develop appropriate services for adults with autism to meet identified needs and priorities.

Councillor Linsay Cunningham-Cross, Cabinet Member for Health and Community Engagement, City of York Council, said: “It’s estimated that autism affects at least 2,600 people in York and it’s vital that we work together with health, social and childcare professionals to ensure those with autism, and their families, receive the best possible support services. Sharing best practice is key to this and I’m confident that the autism community of practice will help improve early diagnosis and support for autism.”

Sue Mesa, Senior Lecturer Occupational Therapy, York St John University, said: “We are delighted to be working in partnership with health and social care services to facilitate an autism community of practice. York St John embraces difference, promotes justice and aims to foster a supportive, creative, and critically reflective community and these aims and values translate very well into this project. We hope that the community of practice will share expertise and experience, stimulate debate and discussion, and support the development of improved opportunities and services for people with autism in York”. 

More information about the services available for people living with an Autism Spectrum Disorder in York and their families and carers is available through www.connecttosupport.org/york or for more information about the event visit Autism - Community of Practice | York St John University - Online Store

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