Deakin University

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A trial of the AASPIRE healthcare toolkit with Australian adults on the autism spectrum

journal contribution
posted on 2023-02-09, 02:02 authored by L R J Kang, T Barlott, M Turpin, Anna UrbanowiczAnna Urbanowicz
Background: Autistic adults experience barriers to accessing health care, such as service provider communication not meeting their needs, healthcare facilities causing sensory discomfort and feeling fear or anxiety regarding their healthcare visit. The Academic Autism Spectrum Partnership in Research and Education (AASPIRE) developed and trialled an online healthcare toolkit to reduce such barriers and improve healthcare interactions between autistic adults and their primary care providers in the United States. This preliminary study aimed to explore experiences of autistic adults using the AASPIRE Healthcare Toolkit in Australia. Methods: Semi-structured interviews were conducted with six autistic adults about their experiences and perceptions of utilising the toolkit in an Australian healthcare setting. Results: Participants identified that the toolkit facilitated their interactions with health professionals by providing structure to appointments, supplementing new knowledge and increasing individual confidence. They also offered suggestions to tailor the toolkit for use in Australia. Conclusions: Future research should seek to explore the experiences of autistic adults using a version of the toolkit adapted for Australian use, as well as exploring the views of health professionals utilising it.



Australian Journal of Primary Health