Autism is a neurodevelopmental disability characterized by social communication and interaction challenges, as well as restricted and repetitive behaviors. For more information about autism symptoms, diagnosis, treatment, and statistics, visit the CDC’s page on Autism.

This report provides a summary of caseload growth of individuals with Autistic Spectrum Disorders served by the California Department of Developmental Services. Changing patterns in age, ethnicity, cognitive level, residence status, and geographic location are described.

Autism as a Proportion of Regional Center Caseload 2009-2020 PDF

Autistic Spectrum Disorders: Best Practices in Inter-Organizational Collaboration PDF A how-to manual for organizations working to integrate services for persons with autistic spectrum disorders and their families.

Autistic Spectrum Disorders: Best Practice Guidelines for Screening, Diagnosis and Assessment PDF This publication provides professionals, policymakers, parents and others with detailed “best practice” recommendations and rationale for screening, evaluating and assessing individuals suspected of having autistic spectrum disorders. These guidelines are the product of nearly a year’s work by experts in the field of autistic spectrum disorders and are based on validated scientific evidence, clinical experience and clinical judgment.

For more information and resources, visit CAPTAIN (California Autism Professional Training and Information Network), a multi-agency network supporting the use of evidence-based practices for autism across the state.

DDS Autism Spectrum Disorder Initiative Highlights (PDF – Updated 4/15/09)

The DDS Autism Spectrum Disorder Initiative was created in response to the increasing numbers of persons diagnosed with autism served by the Department of Developmental Services.

2003 DDS Autism Report PDF

This report is an update of the 1999 Autism Report and provides information on the population on persons with Autistic Spectrum Disorder served by the California Department of Developmental Services through 2002.

Epidemiology Report of Autism in California

The Report to the Legislature by The M.I.N.D. Institute on the Principal Findings from the Epidemiology of Autism in California.

The CHARGE Study (Childhood Autism Risks from Genetics and the Environment)

UC Davis researchers in 2001 launched the first-ever major epidemiological case-control study of both genetic and environmental factors that may affect the development of autism, intellectual disability and developmental delay in children. They are aiming to study between 1,000 and 2,000 persons with autism and their families.


Last modified: November 15, 2022