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Support for Autism Spectrum Disorders

Broadcast date: 6/25/2015

The National Institute for Health defines autism spectrum disorder (ASD) as “a range of complex neurodevelopment disorders, characterized by social impairments, communication difficulties, and restricted, repetitive, and stereotyped patterns of behavior.”

The CDC reports one in every 68 children in the U.S. has been identified with an ASD- an increase from one in 150 in 2002. While ASD can vary significantly in character and severity, it occurs across all ethnic and socioeconomic groups and can affect every age group.  Males are up to four times more likely to be diagnosed with ASD than females.

Researchers have yet to understand what causes ASD, but studies indicate that both genetics and the environment are likely to play a role. Although there is currently no known cure for ASDs, treating ASD early with the use of behavioral interventions and therapy can greatly reduce the symptoms of ASD for many. 

Join host Kris Kington-Barker as she speaks with Dr. Debra Balke one of the co-founders of the Central Coast Autism Spectrum Center, Dr. Laurie Ferguson, board member and licensed clinical psychologist and Director of Spark Psychological Services in Atascadero, as well as Katie Mervin, Camp Director, of Camp Expedition. They will be discussing how to strengthen the quality-of-life for individuals with autism spectrum disorders, through compassion, commitment, and collaboration.

Central Coast Voices is sponsored by ACTION for Healthy Communities in collaboration with KCBX and made possible through underwriting by Joan Gellert-Sargen.

Kris Kington-Barker is co-host of Central Coast Voices, heard every Thursday on KCBX from 1:00—12:00 p.m. Kris has worked in healthcare fields ranging from mental health to hospital administration, and has served as a volunteer and board member for many Central Coast non-profit organizations.