Final consultation on Australia’s first national diagnostic guideline for autism closed late last year, and the revised draft is now with the steering committee for feedback. A final version of the guideline and supporting documents will then be finalised and submitted to the National Health and Medical Research Council (NHMRC) as part of their guideline approval process, with an expected publication in mid-2018.
The guideline has been developed to ensure a consistent process across Australia for how an individual is assessed and diagnosed on the autism spectrum. The aim of the national guideline is to define a diagnostic assessment process that is acceptable to consumers, feasible to conduct, effective in delivering accurate diagnostic decisions, and comprehensive in guiding future clinical management.
The guideline was developed through a 12-month process that involved a series of research and consultative activities, including a workshop in each state of Australia. The development process was led by a small team of senior clinicians and researchers, along with a steering committee made up of representatives from the major professional and consumer organisations. That committee is now reviewing the post-consultation draft.