Wednesday, August 18, 2010

Sen. Amanda Aguirre to Chair state Autism Task Force

STATE CAPITOL, Phoenix – Sen. Amanda Aguirre was appointed to serve as the chair of the Arizona Joint Legislative Autism Spectrum Disorder Task Force, which was created by her legislation and signed into law this year.

“The task force will bring together state and community experts appointed by the Senate President and Speaker of House in order to identify and coordinate services and resources available to families to ultimately enhance early intervention and education to improve the quality of life of children impacted by Autism Spectrum Disorder,” said Sen. Amanda Aguirre.

The Centers from Disease Control and Prevention estimates that an average of one in every 110 children is diagnosed with an autism spectrum disorder. This definition includes Autistic Disorder, Asperger’s Syndrome and Pervasive Developmental Disorder.

Aguirre was appointed by the Senate President Bob Burns as one of two Senate members to serve on the task force.

SB 1181, which creates the task force, will:

Review the coordination of services provided by state agencies, schools and organizations relating to the treatment of persons with autism spectrum disorder, including resources available to the families and other caregivers of persons with autism spectrum disorder.

Identify problems and recommend solutions regarding the availability of services to persons with autism spectrum disorder and their families and caregivers and the efficient delivery and coordination of those services.

Identify current funding sources for services provided to persons with autism spectrum disorder and determine if there are additional available federal or other funding sources that are not being used.

Identify and recommend opportunities for the sharing of resources of services to persons with autism spectrum disorder, including partnerships between the public and private sectors.

Identify evidence-based treatments and best practices for autism spectrum disorder.

Identify state models and service systems for persons with autism spectrum disorder.

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