Autistic Spectrum Condition
Autism is a lifelong developmental condition. It is part of the autism spectrum and is sometimes referred to as an autism spectrum disorder, or an ASD.
The word 'spectrum' is used because the condition will affect people in very different ways. Some people are able to live relatively independent lives; others will require a lifetime of specialist support.
There are three main areas of difficulty which all people with autism share these are:
Difficulty with social communication
Difficulty with social interaction
Difficulty with imagination
There are over half a million people in the UK with autism - that's around 1 in 100 people.
If you think you may be affected by autism then we recommend that you discuss this with your GP who may be able to complete a diagnosis and refer you to a specialist team if appropriate.
We have provided a link to both the National Autism Act and the National Strategy for Adults with Autism in England which was published in March 2010.
As part of our work implementing the national strategy we are working in partnership with NHS Dorset and other key organisations and have developed a Pan Dorset Strategy (pdf, 359kb) (opens in a new window) for adults with autism (this includes Bournemouth and Poole). This Strategy was launched by all the partner organisations in June 2012, and work to achieve the actions in the implementation plan is being reviewed regularly by the Pan Dorset ASC Partnership Board, which meets four times a year. Papers from the Board and the Strategy itself can be accessed by the link to NHS Dorset on the right hand side of this page.