Autism Spectrum Disorder
Resources for Families
Here are links to find care, services, and support and learn more about autism spectrum disorder (ASD).
Find Care, Services, and Support
Do you have questions about autism services? early intervention and special education? health care and insurance? emotional support for you or your other children? These resources will help you find people in your state who can help.
Resource Guide. Services from early intervention to speech and language therapy.
Community Pages. Link to a local chapter.
Autism Intervention Research Network on Physical Health (AIR-P): Contact a Site. Network of hospitals, physicians, researchers, and families at 14 centers across the United States and Canada working together to develop the most effective approach to medical care for children and adolescents with ASD.
- Center for Parent Information and Resources (CPIR): Find Your Parent Center. Contact information for the Parent Training and Information Center (PTI) and Community Parent Resource Center (CPRC) in your state and a national PTI for military families. PTIs and CPRCs offer information about disabilities, early intervention (for babies and toddlers), school services (for school-aged children), therapy, local policies, and much more. PTIs and CPRCs also offer training to parents on how to participate more effectively with professionals in meeting their kids' educational needs. CPIR also offers resources on topics ranging from accommodations to transition.
- Family Voices (FV). Family Voices in Your State and Family to Family Health Information Centers (F2F HICs) help you find resources and services to provide and pay for health care for kids and teens with special needs.
- Parent to Parent USA (P2P USA): Support. Contact information for state parent-to-parent programs that provide emotional support and information to families of kids and teens with special needs, most notably by matching parents who need support with a trained and experienced parent who has shared the experience of disability in the family. Also offers technical assistance and resources to parents interested in building, improving, and evaluating a parent-to-parent program.
- Autism NOW: National Autism Resource and Information Center: Local Agencies. Advocacy, direct services, family support, and resources for people with autism and other developmental disabilities and their families. Telephone: (855) 828-8476.
- Autism Society: Autism Source™. Community-based autism-related services and supports, ranging from assistive technology to camps to respite services. Telephone: (800) 3-AUTISM (328-8476).
- Global and Regional Asperger Syndrome Partnership (GRASP). Online support networks and in-person support groups for people with ASD and their families.
- Sibling Support Project. Programs for the siblings of kids with disabilities. Includes online discussion groups for siblings and parents and publications for purchase that are for and about siblings.
- Exceptional Parent Magazine offers an annual resource guide containing directories of organizations, associations, products, and services for families who have children with disabilities, including autism. To receive a free copy, call (800) 372-7368.
- See OASIS @ MAAP: The Online Asperger Information and Support Center.
- Also see the Community Services Locator: An Online Directory for Finding Community Services for Children and Families.
- Autism NOW: National Autism Resource and Information Center. Resources and information for individuals with ASD and other developmental disabilities and their families.
Topics: Benefits and services, civil rights, community life, education, emergency preparedness, employment, family and relationships, health, housing, recreation, safety, self-advocacy, technology, and transportation.
- Autism Speaks. A wealth of information about autism symptoms, screening, diagnosis, treatment, impact on family life, prevalence, and research. Offers a database of family services, a resource library, toolkits, a technology guide, a collection of video clips about diagnosis and treatment, news, and family stories. Includes resources for military families and materials in languages other than English.
Topics: New diagnosis, Asperger syndrome and high-functioning autism, treatments and therapies, medication decision aid, medication safety, managing anxiety while drawing blood, oral health care, managing constipation, toilet training, sleep, visual supports, challenging behaviors, employment, family supports, housing, Individualized Education Program (IEP), advocacy, participating in autism drug research, postsecondary educational opportunities, school, haircuts, transition, safety, wandering, bullying, and going out to eat.
- Interactive Autism Network (IAN) Community. Information for parents of a child newly diagnosed with ASD and articles about the challenges that people with ASD and their families face, treatments and therapies, and participating in and understanding research.
Topics: New diagnosis, therapies, treatments, education, challenging behaviors, sleep, parenting, autism and Down syndrome, adolescence, environmental factors, language delay, autism and epilepsy, transition, bullying, genetics, research, and more.
- National Autism Association (NAA): Autism Safety Initiative. Information and tools for families, first responders, health professionals, and school personnel about wandering, restraint and seclusion, bullying, and suicide prevention.
- OASIS @ MAAP: The Online Asperger Information and Support Center. Articles, news, and online forums for people with Asperger syndrome and high-functioning autism. Also lists sources for local, national, and international services.
- Organization for Autism Research (OAR): Life Journey Through Autism Series. Guides to research, assessment, navigating the special-education system, and transition. Several guides are available in English and Spanish, and one addresses the needs of military families.
- Pathfinders for Autism. Articles and tips about a new diagnosis, parenting, education, treatment and therapies, environmental modifications, safety, and social stories. Includes checklists by age that list the health, social, education, employment, housing, transportation, financial, advocacy, assistive technology, and support services needed and resources to get started on finding them.
- Food and Drug Administration (FDA). 2014. Beware of False or Misleading Claims for Treating Autism. Silver Spring, MD: Food and Drug Administration (FDA). [Consumer update].
Need More Information?
- See NCEMCH's knowledge path, Autism Spectrum Disorder, for resources about screening, diagnosis, treatment, care, and impact on family life. It includes tools for health care practices; training; improving state systems and services; research; and finding data and statistics, journal articles, reports, and other materials.
- See NCEMCH's family resource brief, Kids and Teens with Special Health Care Needs.
- See NCEMCH's knowledge path, Children and Youth with Special Health Care Needs, for resources about the family-professional partnership; medical home; financing services; screening; community services; transition; advocacy; general health, wellness, and safety; rehabilitation; and more.
Autism Spectrum Disorder: Family Resource Brief, 2nd ed. (March 2014). (Updated: July 2014).
Author: Susan Brune Lorenzo, M.L.S., NCEMCH.
Reviewers: Lauren Agoratus, M.A., parent of a child with autism, Family Voices and Family-to-Family Health Information Resource Center at the Statewide Parent Advocacy Network of N.J.; Lynn L. Cole, M.S., R.N., P.N.P., Strong Center for Developmental Disabilities at the University of Rochester Medical Center; Olivia K. Pickett, M.A., M.L.S., NCEMCH.
Editor: Ruth Barzel, M.A., NCEMCH.