Key stakeholder perspectives on obstacles to an autism-specific Medicaid waiver service delivery model

Calliope Holingue, Yeon Jang, Gazi F Azad, Rebecca Landa

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review

Abstract

Background: Children and youth with autism spectrum disorder have significant, multi-system needs that require supports, such as the autism waiver (AW) service delivery model. This study aimed to identify and describe characteristics of the AW, define obstacles and strengths in the provision of adequate services and provide recommendations for improving overall effectiveness. Methods: This mixed-methods exploratory study used an electronic survey to gain information and perceptions of AW provider agency directors (n = 27) and service coordinators (n = 30). Results: The key barriers reported were the shortage of qualified staff, inadequate staff training, complexity of cases or symptom severity of clients and lack of communication at multiple levels throughout the agency as well as with parents. Conclusions: Recommendations include reinforcing the workforce through higher salaries, greater training and communication interventions. These strategies may reduce staff turnover and shortage, lighten the caseload, reduce the waitlist period and improve the effectiveness and responsiveness of AW services.

Original languageEnglish (US)
JournalJournal of Applied Research in Intellectual Disabilities
DOIs
StateAccepted/In press - 2021

Keywords

  • autism spectrum disorder (ASD)
  • autism waiver
  • services

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Education
  • Developmental and Educational Psychology

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