Dissemination of Services for Autism Spectrum Disorders in Minnesota: A Rural versus Urban Comparison

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Psychology | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Rebecca Pohlig, Psychology


This study investigated the services for autism spectrum disorders (ASDs) that are being used across the state of Minnesota. A primary goal of the study was to examine discrepancies between urban (seven-county metro area) and rural (greater) Minnesota in terms of availability and utilization of ASD services. Additionally, parent/guardian satisfaction with these ASD-specific services was examined. Research was conducted using an online survey, which was completed by 89 Minnesota parents/guardians of children (between the ages of 5 and 12 years) with ASDs. The results indicated that ASD intervention services in rural areas of the state were rated significantly lower on multiple measures of utilization and availability. The findings suggest that there is significant room for improvement in the dissemination of ASD services to rural residents.