Primary Provider Education Regarding Adults with Autism Spectrum Disorder
The purpose of this project is to look at the relationship between education about Autism Spectrum Disorder (ASD) and knowledge, attitudes and beliefs in adult primary care providers. The project addresses the transition challenges adults with ASD have in finding a primary care provider who is comfortable and competent with ASD. Education was provided to adult primary care providers in a multi-site primary care clinic in a large metropolitan city in the Southwestern United States. The Modified Knowledge/Attitudes/Belief instrument was used. A pre-test was administered prior to the education session, then a post-test and a one-month post-test were given afterward.
The results of the education program showed that attitudes and beliefs increased after the education and continued to increase more in the month following. Knowledge improved after the education session but declined after a month although scores were not back to the pre-education level. Primary care providers who receive education about ASD may be more comfortable in caring for this population and more likely to welcome adults with ASD into their practice. Education for primary care providers is key to improving health outcomes for adults with ASD.