On the Horizon: Older Adults With Autism in a Changing Health Care Environment For many years, our health care system has been in a state of change, with most changes occurring as a result of economic issues and not clinical issues. Clinicians working in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) have navigated a complex web of regulations and processes that are expected to change from ... Article
Article  |   February 06, 2018
On the Horizon: Older Adults With Autism in a Changing Health Care Environment
Author Affiliations & Notes
  • Pamela A. Smith
    Bloomsburg University, Bloomsburg, PA
  • Disclosures
    Disclosures ×
  • Financial: Pamela A. Smith has no relevant financial interests to disclose.
    Financial: Pamela A. Smith has no relevant financial interests to disclose.×
  • Nonfinancial: Portions of the data were presented at the 2013 and 2015 Conventions of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Portions of the dataset were published in a chapter in S. Wright (2016)  (ed). Autism spectrum disorder in mid and later life.
    Nonfinancial: Portions of the data were presented at the 2013 and 2015 Conventions of the American Speech-Language-Hearing Association. Portions of the dataset were published in a chapter in S. Wright (2016)  (ed). Autism spectrum disorder in mid and later life.×
Article Information
Special Populations / Autism Spectrum / Older Adults & Aging / Healthcare Settings / Part 1
Article   |   February 06, 2018
On the Horizon: Older Adults With Autism in a Changing Health Care Environment
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, February 2018, Vol. 3, 4-14. doi:10.1044/persp3.SIG15.4
History: Received July 25, 2017 , Revised November 20, 2017 , Accepted November 25, 2017
Perspectives of the ASHA Special Interest Groups, February 2018, Vol. 3, 4-14. doi:10.1044/persp3.SIG15.4
History: Received July 25, 2017; Revised November 20, 2017; Accepted November 25, 2017

For many years, our health care system has been in a state of change, with most changes occurring as a result of economic issues and not clinical issues. Clinicians working in skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) have navigated a complex web of regulations and processes that are expected to change from a volume-driven system to a value-driven system. Such issues are challenging enough when clinicians are working with disorders with which they have received training and gained practical experience, but the growing population of residents in our facilities who are aging with autism will further complicate the SNF landscape. Because of the increases in prevalence of autism in the general population, the number of patients who will be entering our SNFs will only grow. New regulations and processes will require practice-based evidence and functional outcomes, data which do not exist with adults with autism. This article will discuss the impact of changes in our health care system, specifically in the SNF, and how these changes may impact the provision of care to a growing population of elders with autism.

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