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The ASD Strategic Action Plan for Wales - Update



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  • 1. The ASD Strategic Action Plan for Wales – Aberystwyth Update
    Hugh Morgan
    ASD Implementation Manager for Wales
    Welsh Assembly Government
  • 2. ASD Policy Development in the UK nations : State of Play
    • Northern Ireland : NI Assembly ASD Strategic Action introduced in late 2008. All-age covers Health & Social Services but not Education. £2m over 3yrs to support implementation
    • 3. England : Adults Autism Act 2009 and Adults Autism Strategy 2010. £500k to support implementation
    • 4. Scotland : No legislation or strategy as yet produced by Scottish Parliament
    • 5. Wales : Welsh Assembly Government’s ASD Strategic Action Plan April 2008. All-age. £7.1m ring-fenced to support implementation to date
  • Impact - Headlines
    Significant ring-fenced funding now going into autism
    Staffing infrastructure for autism within the statutory sector at local, regional and national levels
    Extensive stakeholder engagement with families in local and national
    asd planning
    22 brand new local asd projects crossing two or more authorities
    A range of research initiatives including a Chair in Autism and Wales Autism Research Centre
    Major developments underway for adults including an All-Wales approach to diagnosis, employment and community support
    Range of awareness-raising materials to be launched shortly
    WAG evaluation of impact to date about to commence
  • 6. Achievements during the first 18 months?
    1. Development of an ASD Infrastructure for Wales which covers personnel, planning and stakeholder involvement
    22 Local ASD leads identified throughout Wales
    22 Local ASD stakeholder groups formed
    22 Local ASD action plans submitted to WAG
    3 Regional Support Officers appointed
    Completion by each authority of a baseline questionnaire and asked each to submit these to WAG which were then analysed
    A national stakeholder group coordinated by WAG
  • 7. Achievements cont’d
    2. ASD Research capability increased :
    WAG Commissioned Bangor and Glamorgan Universities to
    research the needs of older people with ASD. Submitted
    10/2009 to WAG
    WAG contributed to the establishment of the Chair in Autism and Welsh Autism Research Centre (WARC)
    2010. WAG have commissioned WARC to evaluate children’s ASD assessment and diagnostic services throughout Wales
    2010/11. WAG have commissioned BCUHB & WARC to develop a database for autism for North Wales (Pilot for whole of Wales)
    3. Considerable strengthening of the Welsh ASD Strategy in relation Adults with Autism
  • 8. 4. Projects underway : Awareness-raising materials
    • 4. Awareness-raising materials : currently being developed by WAG for around 50 practitioners groups
    GPs and Primary Healthcare workers,
    Primary, Secondary, Further and Higher Education
    Family Support Practitioners
    Older persons care services
    High street outlets (opticians, dentists, chiropodists)
    Residential and Day Care Services
    Launch of these materials by Ministers in October 2010
  • 9. 5. Projects Underway cont’d
    • 22 new ASD projects starting in 2010 across Wales arising from local and regional asd planning and funded by WAG. Each viewed as a pilot project to inform future development of the ASD strategy in Wales. For example:
    • 10. Short-term care resource and drop-in centre in Mid & West Wales
    • 11. Monitored social networking sites for individuals with ASD and also for families in Mid & West Wales
    • 12. Detailed investigation of the circumstance sand needs of adults with AS living across North Wales
    • 13. Play/social communication club for children with ASD in North Wales
    • 14. Emergency Attention Card Scheme throughout South East Wales
    • 15. Post-diagnostic support pack for families living in South East Wales
  • 6. Developing a dedicated Research Capacity for Autism in Wales
    • A clear need to underpin a government autism strategy with a coherent research strategy and evidence base
    • 16. An increasing role for research to influence and impact upon the government policy in asd
    • 17. Investment into autism research in Wales essential
    • 18. Leadership and innovation to spearhead this process
  • Timelines
    • April 2009 : Professor Sue Leekam takes up post as Chair in Autism, School of Psychology, Cardiff University
    • 19. Research Studentships/Research Fellow/Associates recruited
    • 20. April 2010 : Wales Autism Research Centre (WARC) commences operation
    • 21. 23rd September 2010 : Formal launch of WARC and Inaugural lecture to celebrate the Chair in Autism
  • Objectives of the WARC
    • Mission
    • 22. to create positive change for individuals and families affected with autism by:
    • 23. advancing scientific research in areas of risk factors, early identification, diagnosis, cognitive development and intervention
    • 24. working in partnership with practitioners, charities and the Welsh Assembly Government to integrate scientific evidence with policy and practice
    • 25. Objectives
    • 26. to conduct internationally competitive scientific research projects
    • 27. to facilitate Inter-disciplinary research and research networks
    • 28. to develop research and training that supports and influences practice and policy
    • 29. to improve public and professional awareness of research
  • contact
    Professor Sue Leekam
    Chair in Autism
    The Wales Autism Research Centre
    School of Psychology
    Cardiff University
    CF10 3XQ
    Email leekamsr@cardiff.ac.uk;
  • 30. 7. Communication
    From spring 2010 Newsletters 3 types :
    ASD Leads newsletter
    Bulletins for national and local politicians
    Public newsletter – for the aider autism community
    Websites :
    “Connections” – site for ASD leads and Regional Support Team
    WAG “ASD Matters” public website being launched during the autumn 2010
  • 31. 2010 Strengthening the Agenda for Adults with ASD
    • Task and Finish Group – reporting directly to our Minister.
    • 32. Recommendations all agreed Minister
    • 33. £1.7m additional funding committed by WAG to implement the actions arising in the following :
    • 34. Diagnosis and post-diagnostic counselling
    • 35. Access to Services
    • 36. Regionally coordinated community & monitoring support
    • 37. Employment
    • 38. Housing
    • 39. Future work
  • Where are we now :
    1. Assessment & Diagnosis
    • To create a consistent All-Wales approach to adult diagnosis through the development a clinical network
    • 40. To establish a post-diagnostic counselling service
    • 41. To evaluate progress made after the first two years and report back the Minister
    • 42. £752k allocated from 2010-2013
  • 2. Community and Monitoring Support Schemes
    • Development of regionally coordinated community-monitoring schemes for adults (esp for those with AS)
    • 43. Proposals currently being received by WAG prepared by the 3 ASD Regional Support Officers
    • 44. WAG have allocated £720k from 2010-13
  • Employment & Related Areas
    • Autism Employment Ambassador for Wales to be appointed
    • 45. Training to be provided to :
    Job CentrePlus
    Careers Wales
    Disability Employment Advisors
    • WAG – to be an autism-friendly employer
    • 46. WAG are committing £170k 2010-12
  • Older Persons with ASD Research
    • “The circumstances and support needs of older people with autism”
    • 47. Commissioned by WAG – a collaborative project undertaken by Bangor and Glamorgan Universities and administered by Autism Cymru
    • 48. First research study on this subject anywhere
    • 49. Series of recommendations arising
    • 50. Research completed and submitted to the Minister in October 09
  • Outcomes
    • WAG hosting a 2 day adults with autism conference on 10/11 June. Day Two devoted to older people with autism
    • 51. Prof Sue Leekam asked by Ministers to look at the recommendations made in the research report, draw together LDAN/OPAN etc and make proposals to the Minister
    • 52. National Service Framework for Older Persons to be shaped to reflect the needs of older people with autism
  • ASD Adults Task & Finish Group Reconvenes May 2010
    Key Tasks :
    Further/Higher Education
    Mental Health
    Criminal Justice System
    Older Person Research
    Impact of DWP welfare reforms upon adults with ASD in Wales
  • 53. Evaluation
    We will be evaluating the impact of the ASD Strategic Action to date during the early autumn.
    This will involved all Local ASD leads; Local Stakeholder groups, national stakeholder group, vols orgs etc
    Further details will issued shortly
  • 54. Thanks for listening!