B.C. Children\’s Hospital Working to Reduce Autism Assessment Wait Times

Global News reported that B.C. Children’s Hospital says it is working to meet a key recommendation made by B.C.’s Representative for Children and Youth when it comes to autism assessment waits in the province.

The report Alone And Afraid, about an Aboriginal boy with autism, recommended that autism assessment wait lists be reduced to 12 weeks by the year 2021.

Right now, 2,800 children in B.C. are waiting to be assessed, and the wait times are lengthy, averaging 55 weeks. In the Northern Health Region, the average wait is 62 weeks.

B.C. Children’s Hospital oversees assessments in the province.

Following the report, the province’s advocate for Children and Youth is also recommending Health and the Ministry of Children & Family Development (MCFD) work collaboratively to develop a plan to ensure early identification, timely assessment and appropriate supports for children under six with signs of developmental delay and develop a protocol with the Ministry of Education to address chronic, unexplained school absences.