Autism in South Australia supported by new program

There are over 205,000 people with Autism in Australia. A new program in South Australia helps to support infants who may have the disorder.

The South Australia Government has launched a support program for parents of young children who show early signs of Autism Spectrum Disorder.

The program will target families of six to 18-month-olds — an age of rapid brain development, when the first signs of autism are typically observed.

As part of a joint Federal and SA Government initiative, experts will work with parents to help them better understand their baby’s feelings and behaviours. It’s hoped the program will act as an early intervention measure to improve outcomes for children.

Autism in Australia

Autism Spectrum Disorder is a condition diagnosed through developmental assessments and behavioural observations.

A 2018 survey found there are over 205,000 diagnosed Autistic people in Australia.

Emily Bourke was named SA’s Assistant Minister for Autism in 2022, the first in Australia.

New autism program

During the program, experts will analyse short video recordings of interactions between parents and children. It’s designed to help caregivers strengthen their communication skills with their babies.

It’s estimated up to 1,300 South Australian families will benefit from the ‘Inklings’ program.

The same program was rolled out to 700 families in Western Australia last year, under a pilot announced by NDIS Minister Bill Shorten.

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