Integrated Autism Service

In March 2017, the Minister for Health and Social Services announced an additional investment of £7 million to support the development of the Integrated Autism service for Wales. This takes the total funding for the service up to a total of £13 million.

Why have we developed an Integrated Autism Service?

Because autistic individuals, parents and carers told us they needed more support. They told us they can’t access services because they don’t meet the eligibility criteria. They told us they wanted support with:

  • Behaviour issues
  • Emotional issues such as anxiety and anger
  • Developing social and daily living skills
  • Accessing leisure and recreational activities

We learned that autistic adults and children and their family’s lives are severely affected because they can’t access the correct support, that many can’t leave the house on a daily basis and that parents and carers feel highly stressed.

We also heard that many adults who think they may have autism find it difficult to access a diagnostic assessment.

What will the service provide?

The service will provide diagnostic assessment for autistic adults (sometimes jointly with other services), support and advice for autistic adults and parent carers.

I am a parent of an autistic child – what will this mean for me?

Whilst not working directly with children and young people, the service will work in partnership with other organisations to support parents and carers.

Where needed, the service may also work with other staff involved with your child such as school staff or health visitors to make sure you and your child are given consistent support and advice.

Parents and carers will be able to self – refer to the service, if your child has received a diagnosis of Autism you will be able to access training and advice from the Integrated Autism Service.

I am an autistic adult – what will this mean for me?

If you are an adult and think you have autism but don’t have a diagnosis, the service will be able to offer you an diagnostic assessment if you want it. You will be able to get advice and support from the service without needing to be referred by someone else. Below are some of the challenges that you might need advice and support on:

  • Anxiety
  • Social skills
  • Accessing leisure and recreational activities
  • Developing your daily living skills (such as paying bills, shopping and cooking)
  • Accessing other services such as healthcare or employment support
  • Or other difficulties with you may be experiencing

Will the service provide everything for us?

No, the service will not provide:

  • Direct work with children and young people
  • Emergency/ crisis intervention
  • Respite care
  • Rapid response

For those with more complex needs (where other services such as mental health support is needed), staff from the Integrated Autism Service will work with other professionals to ensure they are able to provide ‘autism-friendly’ support.

I am a professional what will this mean for me?

The IAS are there to support professionals to gain knowledge, skills and experience in working with autistic people.

How do they do this?

  • Training
  • Consultation
  • Advice

How can I find out more about the Integrated Autism Services in my area?

Some services are more established than others, as the Integrated Autism Services have been rolled out with a phased approach across Wales.  Please click on the links below for information on the service in your area:

How can I access ASDinfoWales resources in the meantime?

Email us at ASDinfo@WLGA.gov.uk or inbox us on Twitter, let us know what you need. We will try our best to get it to you.