The BBC reported on Saturday that autistic children are appearing so fast in five South-West London boroughs that facilities presently only exist to diagnose half of them. This follows on very similar reports at the end of last year from Scotland and Northern Ireland. The proposed solution by health managers - protested by the National Autistic Society – is to only give a diagnosis in the most serious cases, which begs the question how do you even know which are the most serious cases if you do not assess the children? At the same time it should be said the NAS only have themselves to blame because they have for the last two decades covered up for the government over the autism epidemic.
Since this is based on referrals rather than diagnosis it seems to be supply led – the children will not even qualify as autistic or get support services if they do not get a diagnosis, but now we are looking at each of these boroughs having to potentially cater for 300 new cases a year. There are 32 London boroughs so this is in the order of 10,000 new cases a year for the city. No mainstream source asks why this is happening or how it is sustainable. Anyone who mentions this unfortunate matter will no doubt slip down the google rankings into oblivion.
The present increase may follow additions to the maternal (influenza and DTaP) and infant vaccine schedules (Prevenar 13, Rotarix).
John Stone is UK Editor for Age of Autism.