The changing prevalence of autism in three regions of Canada
- 1.9k Downloads
In 2002/2003, the National Epidemiologic Database for the Study of Autism in Canada started capturing information on children diagnosed with autism in different regions of the country. Based on data collected through 2008 in Newfoundland and Labrador and 2010 in Prince Edward Island and Southeastern Ontario, the estimated average annual percent increases in prevalence among children 2–14 years of age ranged from 9.7 % (95 % CI 7.8–11.6) to 14.6 % (95 % CI 11.3–18.0). Differential in-migration and identification of previously undetected cases may have contributed in part to the increases observed, but we cannot rule out the possibility of a true increase in incidence, particularly given the lack of a leveling-off of prevalence among the 6- to 9-year olds.
KeywordsAutism Surveillance Canada NEDSAC
We gratefully acknowledge the families and agencies that provided information for the National Epidemiologic Database for the Study of Autism in Canada (NEDSAC). A list of agencies and partners can be viewed on our website at www.nedsac.ca. We also wish to thank those individuals who made a substantial contribution to NEDSAC but are not named as authors on this publication: Robert Gauthier and Lori Crews, who worked for the Department of Education when they were NEDSAC Regional Co-Directors in Newfoundland and Labrador; Andrea Noonan, who worked for the Department of Social Services and Seniors when she was a NEDSAC Regional Co-Director in Prince Edward Island; Dr. C.T. Yu, Director of Research at the St. Amant Centre in Winnipeg, Manitoba and a Professor of Psychology at the University of Manitoba, who served as the Regional Director of NEDSAC in that province; and Dr. Jeanette Holden, who headed the Autism Spectrum Disorders—Canadian-American Research Consortium and was Principal Investigator on the initial grant that led to the establishment of NEDSAC. Finally, we are grateful to the research assistants who interviewed parents and entered data in NEDSAC over the years. This work was supported by an Interdisciplinary Health Research Team Grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (#43820) to the Autism Spectrum Disorders—Canadian-American Research Consortium (ASD-CARC: www.asdcarc.com; Jeanette J.A. Holden, Principal Investigator), and by an Operating Grant from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research (#79556) to Hélène Ouellette-Kuntz. The findings and interpretations expressed in this paper are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions of the individuals or agencies that provided data for this project.
- American Psychiatric Association. (2000). Diagnostic and statistical manual of mental disorders; volume IV-text revision (4th ed.). Washington, DC: American Psychiatric Association.Google Scholar
- Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network Surveillance Year 2002 Principal Investigators. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2007). Prevalence of autism spectrum disorders—Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, 14 sites, United States, 2002. Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries, 56(1), 12–28.Google Scholar
- Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network Surveillance Year 2008 Principal Investigators. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (2012). Prevalence of autism spectrum disorders—Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, 14 sites, United States, 2008. Morbidity & Mortality Weekly Report. Surveillance Summaries, 61(3), 1–19.Google Scholar
- Lai, D. C., Tseng, Y. C., Hou, Y. M., & Guo, H. R. (2012). Gender and geographic differences in the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders in children: Analysis of data from the National Disability Registry of Taiwan. Research in Developmental Disabilities, 33(3), 909–915.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Lord, C., Risi, S., Lambrecht, L., Cook, E. H., Jr, Leventhal, B. L., DiLavore, P. C., et al. (2000). The Autism Diagnostic Observation Schedule-Generic: A standard measure of social and communication deficits associated with the spectrum of autism. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 30(3), 205–223.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- National Cancer Institute. (n.d.). Joinpoint: Frequently asked questions: Linear or log-linear model. http://surveillance.cancer.gov/joinpoint/faq/linear_model.html. Accessed 15 May 2012.
- Ouellette-Kuntz, H., Coo, H., & Gorski, D. (2012a). Findings from the National Epidemiologic Database for the Study of Autism in Canada (NEDSAC): Changes in the prevalence of autism spectrum disorders in Newfoundland and Labrador, Prince Edward Island, and Southeastern Ontario. http://authoring.wp.queensu.ca/lenya/nedwww/live/Publications/FamilyUpdates/NEDSAC_Report_March2012.pdf. Accessed 15 May 2012.
- Pinborough-Zimmerman, J., Bakian, A. V., Fombonne, E., Bilder, D., Taylor, J., & McMahon, W. M. (2012). Changes in the administrative prevalence of autism spectrum disorders: Contribution of special education and health from 2002–2008. Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders, 42(4), 521–530.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Regidor, E., de Mateo, S., Ronda, E., Sanchez-Paya, J., Gutierrez-Fisac, J. L., de la Fuente, L., et al. (2011). Heterogeneous trend in smoking prevalence by sex and age group following the implementation of a national smoke-free law. Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health, 65(8), 702–708.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Schieve, L. A., Rice, C., Yeargin-Allsopp, M., Boyle, C. A., Kogan, M. D., Drews, C., et al. (2012). Parent-reported prevalence of autism spectrum disorders in US-born children: An assessment of changes within birth cohorts from the 2003 to the 2007 National Survey of Children’s Health. Maternal and Child Health Journal, 16(1), S151–S157.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar
- Statistics Canada (n.d.a). Table 051-0001 Estimates of population, by age group and sex for July 1, Canada, provinces and territories, annual (persons), 1971 to 2010. CANSIM (database). Using E-STAT (distributor). http://estat.statcan.gc.ca/cgi-win/cnsmcgi.exe?Lang=E&EST-Fi=EStat/English/CII_1-eng.htm. Accessed 16 December 2011.
- Statistics Canada (n.d.b). Table 051-0052 Estimates of population by census division, sex and age group for July 1, based on the Standard Geographical Classification (SGC) 2006, annual (persons). CANSIM (database). Using E-STAT (distributor). http://estat.statcan.gc.ca/cgi-win/cnsmcgi.exe?Lang=E&EST-Fi=EStat/English/CII_1-eng.htm. Accessed 3 January 2012.
- Statistics Canada (n.d.c). The daily: Births. http://www.statcan.gc.ca/daily-quotidien/050712/dq050712a-eng.htm. Accessed 16 December 2011.
- The Standing Senate Committee on Social Affairs, Science and Technology (2007). Final report on The Enquiry on the Funding for the Treatment of Autism. Pay now or pay later. Autism families in crisis. http://www.parl.gc.ca/39/1/parlbus/commbus/senate/com-e/soci-e/rep-e/repfinmar07-e.htm#_Toc162403105. Accessed 3 October 2012.
- Wiggins, L. D., Baio, J., Schieve, L., Lee, L. C., Nicholas, J., & Rice, C. E. (2012). Retention of autism spectrum diagnoses by community professionals: Findings from the Autism and Developmental Disabilities Monitoring Network, 2000 and 2006. Journal of Developmental and Behavioral Pediatrics, 33(5), 387–395.PubMedCrossRefGoogle Scholar