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Dubai issues autism care guidelines

To enhance the quality of health services for children and adolescents of determination

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The Government of Dubai has issued a framework of guiding principles to enhance the quality of health services provided to children and adolescents of determination – particularly individuals with autism spectrum disorder – from birth to the age of 18.

This endeavor comes in alignment with the objectives of the Inclusive Health Policy, a program within the Dubai Disability Strategy 2020, as part of the ‘My Community ... A City for Everyone’ initiative which aims to transform Dubai into an inclusive city for people of determination, and promotes monitoring their health, protecting their rights, and improving their quality of life.

The 'My Community ... A City for Everyone’ initiative was launched in 2014 under the supervision of the Higher Committee for the Protection of the Rights of People of Determination. It is based on several programs focused on creating an inclusive society to guarantee people of determination a better opportunity for social inclusion, protection, healthcare, education, and future employment.

The Higher Committee continues to follow up with the various stakeholders to ensure the successful implementation of the Dubai Disability Strategy 2020.

The guiding principles – which serve as a basis for the General Clinical Standards – represent the first step towards the development of the necessary protocols for care and rehabilitation services of children and adolescents with autism spectrum disorder.

They allow for consistency in early intervention methods and policies; healthcare protocols; and the basics of assessing the quality of services provided by specialists and professionals to ensure quality is consistent across different facilities. The principles also will ensure improving the performance of specialists given that their training will be based on the new set of standards. Moreover, the principles offer guidance to parents and caregivers, which will help them realize best practice in diagnosis and treatment methods.