Achieving best value for services for people affected by autism will ensure that resources are effectively targeted and that the outcomes in improving people's lives are the best we can achieve.
Best value for services
It is recommended that Knapp's work on the economic costs of autism is analysed and applied to the Scottish context to inform strategy and planning on what interventions lead to positive impacts both for individuals and for the economy as a whole. Particular attention should be paid to his 'invest to save' assertion that if 4% of those with Asperger's were given appropriate support into work this would ultimately mean that those individuals may not require services and could contribute to the economy.
It is recommended that the effectiveness of implementation of the Commissioning guidance is reviewed by the ASD Reference Group by facilitating an audit of current service commissioning.
It is recommended that the ASD Reference Group commissions research to examine and compare the outcomes in relation to quality of life for those who are supported by autism service providers and individuals who access generic provision and that relevant findings are used to inform revised guidance for commissioners of services for people with ASD.
The ASD Reference Group in collaboration with autism service providers will identify the key determinants of service provision that result in improved quality of life for people with ASD, across the spectrum and across the lifespan.
It is recommended that the ASD Reference Group hosts an event to evaluate and recognise good practice in Scotland to disseminate models of practice, to evaluate success, recognise benefits and limitations and agree how to develop good models across the country in a way that is cost-effective.
It is recommended that agencies and services develop a menu of interventions including advice, therapeutic interventions and counselling for children, young people and adults with an ASD, that are appropriate and flexible to individual need. This menu should identify advice and support that is immediately available, and set out the referral and assessment process for all other services and interventions.
It is recommended that consideration is given to the specific supports needed for the more able individuals with ASD.
It is recommended that an evaluation of existing research is commissioned by the ASD Reference Group as well as consideration given to what further research is necessary with a view to disseminating what is available and to the commissioning some pieces that would be of particular practical value to people with ASD and their carers.