A new report released by the Public Health Agency of Canada, states that approximately 1 in every 66 Canadian Children are diagnosed with Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD). ASD is a neurological and developmental disorder that develops in early childhood and last throughout adulthood. ASD refers to a range of conditions characterized by challenges with social skills, repetitive behaviour, and communication. The disorder is represented as a spectrum as it can present with a wide range of symptoms and severities, making each case unique. Although there are key attributes or "symptoms" linked to ASD, no two cases are the same.
The report, leased Thursday, analyzed data of children and youth aged 5-17 years old from across six provinces and one territory. The study noted that of the numbers gathered, boys were four to five times more likely to be diagnosed with ASD than when compared to girls. Although researchers are still investigating as to why this discrepancy exists.
This report helps to illustrate the increasing prevalence of ASD in Canada, and the importance of developing programs and services that best support the growing need for individuals with ASD.
Although this is the first Canadian- specific report detailing the national prevalence of ASD, it is a huge stepping stone to continued research in the field of Autism!
Click here to access the full report released by Public Health Agency of Canada.