Healthcare Providers’ Experiences with Autism: A Scoping Review

  • Rae MorrisEmail author
  • Andrea Greenblatt
  • Michael Saini
Original Paper


Gaps in research knowledge exist regarding patient-provider interactions with individuals with autism in healthcare settings. To address this, a scoping review was conducted focusing on the experiences of healthcare professionals working with individuals with autism. A systematic search and screen of the literature resulted in 27 relevant studies. Six key themes were found across these 27 studies including (1) complexity beyond usual role, (2) limited knowledge and resources, (3) training/prior experience, (4) communication and collaboration, (5) need for information and training, and (6) need for care coordination and systemic changes. The results of this review have implications for future research and practice and should be considered when reflecting on opportunities to enhance research and service provision with individuals with autism.


Scoping review Autism Healthcare Service provision Patient-provider Professional experience 


Author Contributions

RM conceived of the study; participated in its design and coordination; participated in collection, interpretation and analysis of data; and drafted the manuscript. AG participated in the design, interpretation and analysis of the data, and helped to draft the manuscript. MS participated in interpretation of data, and helped to draft the manuscript. All authors read and approved the final manuscript.


No funding was received for this study.

Compliance with Ethical Standards

Conflict of interest

The authors declare that they have no conflict of interest.

Ethical Approval

This article does not contain any studies with human participants or animals performed by any of the authors.


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© Springer Science+Business Media, LLC, part of Springer Nature 2019

Authors and Affiliations

  1. 1.School of Social WorkUniversity of British ColumbiaVancouverCanada
  2. 2.The Redpath CentreVancouverCanada
  3. 3.Factor-Inwentash Faculty of Social WorkUniversity of TorontoTorontoCanada

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