Simone Papernick of Whitby, whose son Noah, left, has autism, was pleased to hear about the audit. LUCAS OLENIUK / TORONTO STAR FILE PHOTO
To read on NeuroDevNet:
Ontario’s auditor general to conduct extensive evaluation of autism services
An unprecedented review of Ontario’s autism services is to follow dual inquiries into the status of autism services in the province.
In December a blue-ribbon panel was convened, and Ontario Ombudsman André Marin decided to investigate the “dire” lack of services for adults. Autism rates are rising rapidly, as one in 88 children are now diagnosed with the disorder, up from one in 150 just two years ago. Amid these growing rates, the Ontario government has spent over $186 million in expanding applied behaviour analysis, quadrupling the funding for autism therapies since 2003.
The primary goal of the audit is to better understand the apparent disconnect between funding and results. “It’s becoming an increasing expenditure, it’s in the public interest and we haven’t really touched on the whole issue in a good seven or eight years,” Auditor General Jim McCarter said in an interview with the Toronto Star. “We felt it was time to have a look at it.”
‘This is the first extensive “value for money” financial review of the sector, according to the Star article. “This would be a more focused audit than we’ve done in the past, strictly focusing on autism as a separate issue,” Mr. McCarter was quoted as saying. Recommendations will be included in his 2013 annual report delivered in early December.
To read the Toronto Star article in its entirety, click here.